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Pay taxes promptly to accelerate national development – GRA urges tax payers

By Isaac
Arkoh, GNA

Cape Coast, Aug 03, GNA – The Ghana Revenue
Authority (GRA) has appealed to business entities to desist from under and over
declaring of tax returns to rake in much revenue for accelerated national
development.

Mr George K O Amankwa-Boateng, Head of Medium
Tax Office in Cape Coast, said it was an obligation of every eligible citizen
to pay tax for national development and warned that it was a punishable offence
to under-declare tax returns.

The tax expert said this at a Tax Education
Seminar for a cross-section of taxpayers who were mostly entrepreneurs,
academic institutions; wholesalers and retailers which sought to broaden
engagement with stakeholders towards improved revenue mobilization in Cape
Coast.

He indicated that the GRA had strengthened
their strategies to block avenues of evading taxes and collection through a
modernized system dubbed Total Revenue Integrated Processing System (TRIPS).

Mr Amankwa-Boateng urged the participants to
register for the unique Tax identification Number (TIN) that will enable
businesses to transact business with ease with uninterrupted quality services
from GRA to grow their organizations.

The Revenue Administration Act enjoins every
taxpayer to register for the TIN to enable them transact businesses, clear
goods at the ports, file case in court, receive payment from controller
Accountant General Department.

Mr James Aggrey, Head of Audit of the Medium
Tax Office (MTO) who spoke on the VAT Flat Rate Scheme (VFRS) said the
introduction of the three percent VFRS and the 17.5 per cent Value Added
Tax  had generated debate, but the GRA
would continue to engage taxpayers for understanding and compliance.

According to him the three percent VFRS was
introduced in 2007 for retailers and importers but its implementation date was
July 01, 2017 for wholesalers who were not covered initially with a marginal
rate of three percent charged on the value of goods supplied.

Mr Aggrey said manufacturers, service
providers, retailers and wholesalers were not allowed to charge the three
percent VAT.

He encouraged all taxpayers to honour their
tax obligations to avoid paying interests and penalties or face court action,
adding that persons or businesses who fail to meet the deadline were liable to
pay interest on each month or part of a month for which any part of the tax is
outstanding.

The Head of Audit for MTO admonished the
participants to inculcate the habit of voluntarily filling their tax returns
and keep proper records of their business transactions to enable them receive
the needed direction and incentives for the Central Region

Mr Aggrey cited lack of logistics and
incentives for employees, unwillingness to file tax returns, lack of compliance
as some of the challenges confronting its work.

He called on taxpayers to see payment as a
civic responsibility and desist from attacking revenue collection officers but
constantly engage GRA to address their challenges.

Mr. Tony Yoofi Pokoo-Aikins, Chairman Central
Regional Chamber of Commerce, thanked the GRA for the seminar and tasked the
revenue agencies to foster partnership with local businesses thereby creating
more understanding on the relevance of paying taxes.

Some participants also appealed to the GRA to
target foreigners doing businesses locally but were not paying the required
taxes.

GNA

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