The Budget Statement and Economic Policy of the government for 2013 has tasked the Ghana Revenue Authority to increase its tax education to ensure that the greater percentage of the Ghanaian population comply with their tax obligations.
This has become crucial because the country needs more resources to fund its development projects, especially at a time when its status has been graded to lower middle income status, meaning its concessional loans and grants will dry up in the foreseeable future.
“While recognising the strong revenue performance in 2012, the country needs to sustain revenue mobilisation efforts in view of the huge funding requirements needed to close the country’s infrastructure gap and domestic payment of arrears,” the Minister of Finance, Mr Seth Terkper said.
He added that the focus on revenue generation in the 2013 fiscal year therefore would be to expand the tax base and improve the efficiency of tax administration.
The Public Affairs Unit of the GRA told the GRAPHIC BUSINESS that although the authority had been carrying out extensive public awareness, it would increase the base and frequency.
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In support of that, the Ghana Community Services Limited (GCNet), an information and communications solutions provider for government, has presented 12 sets of modern public address system valued at about US$5,000 to the GRA.
The presentation was done from the Ghana eGovernment (GeGov) project office of the GCNet. The project is aimed at automating the offices of GRA to enable the issuance of new tax identification numbers, and the Registrar General’s Department to ensure speedy registration and database of businesses in Ghana.
The modern PA systems come with two flash drive ports on each machine with the capacity to accept auxiliary devices. One of the machines can play video, which would appropriate for tax education in rural areas.
The Head of GeGov Change Management Team, Mr Theo Quarcoo, who presented the items on behalf of GCNet, said the equipment would assist the GRA in its tax education efforts in an effort to make voluntary tax compliance less burdensome.
The Commissioner of the Customs Division of the GRA, Major Carl Modey, who received the items on behalf of the GRA, thanked the GCNet GeGov project for the timely intervention and called on all income earning Ghanaians to cultivate the spirit of voluntarily honouring their tax obligations, as a way of contributing to nation building.
Story by Samuel Doe Ablordeppey/Graphic Business