The Commissioner-General of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Mr Emmanuel Kofi Nti, has indicated that the authority’s 2018 revenue target of GH¢39.8 billion is achievable.
According to him, through the combination of effective supervisory skills, new initiatives in debt collection, sustained public education and strong application of the tax laws – sanctions, the 2018 collection target would be within reach.
Mr Nti gave the assurance at the opening of the annual management retreat of the GRA in Kumasi at the weekend on the theme: “Transforming revenue mobilisation strategies: The way forward.”
Last year performance
Last year, the GRA failed to meet its revenue target as it raked in GH¢32.3 billion, representing a shortfall of GH¢1.1 billion.
The amount, however, represented a nominal growth of 22.3 per cent over the 2016 collection and was the GRA’s best performance in the past five years.
Call for hard work
The Commissioner General urged the staff of the GRA to work hard and show commitment to duty, ensure regular audits, visit taxpayers’ business premises regularly and implement regular compliance activities.
“Let’s recommit to do our best for our country,” he added.
Mr Nti hinted of plans to undertake reforms of the customs warehousing, transit and re-exports regimes alongside intensified patrol to check smuggling.
He noted that the GRA would be resolute in working towards the success of the excise tax stamp – an innovation meant to monitor the payment of the correct amount of excise duty, eliminate the sale of counterfeit and illicit products.
The show of resolve comes at a time when there already appear to be resistance from some quarters but he said the authority was determined to ensure it worked successfully to stop the infractions of the law.
He mentioned the introduction of the “GFTrade and the Temporary Vehicle Importation Monitoring System (TVIMS) to aid the Customs Division to have access to the correct values of imported goods from the countries of exportation and verify values declared by importers.
That, he said, would enable the division to raise more revenue by discovering fraudulent declarations.
It would also help track temporarily imported vehicles which had over-stayed while at the same time identify smuggled vehicles.
The Ashanti Regional Minister, Mr Simon Osei Mensah, echoed the need for the GRA to broaden the tax net and to do more to ensure compliance.
He called for innovative strategies to engage and encourage people in the informal sector to honour their tax obligations.
The Manwerehene of Kumasi, Baffour Osei Hyiaman Brantuo, said paying tax was a civic responsibility. — GNA