President Akufo-Addo says it is in the public interest for the E-levy bill to be enacted into law.
He said Ghana cannot continue to depend on foreign aid, and must therefore find innovative ways such as the E-levy to raise revenue to finance its development.
Delivering the keynote address at the 2022 National Labour Conference at Kwahu- Nkwatia in the Eastern Region, Nana Akufo-Addo said the percentage of Ghanaians paying direct taxes is woefully inadequate and efforts must be made to bridge the gap.
“We cannot continue to allow less than 10%, specifically 7.8%, that is, 2.4 million people of the population to carry the direct tax burden of 30.8 million people. We must provide an opportunity for every Ghanaian to contribute towards nation-building.”
“The proposed e-levy is such an innovative fiscal measure which will help improve our tax to GDP ratio on an equitable basis. I believe strongly that it is in the public interest that it should be enacted into law. We cannot continue to live on foreign savings,” he noted.
The President said the E-levy will provide the opportunity for every Ghanaian to contribute towards nation-building, stressing that Ghanaians must accept the implications of Ghana beyond aid.
“It is time we accepted the full implications of our goal of Ghana beyond aid and design our fiscal profile accordingly. This will be one of the surest ways of expanding the tax base for mobilizing our own resources,” he said.
The E-levy is a new tax measure introduced by the government in the 2022 Budget on basic transactions related to digital payments and electronic platform transactions.
A charge of 1.75% will apply to electronic transactions that are more than GH¢100 on a daily basis.
The approval of the e-levy by Parliament has been fraught with many challenges with the minority kicking against it.
The government has indicated that it will withdraw the bill from parliament, make some amendments and relay it.