Ghana’s Minister of Information, Mr Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, has hinted that government is likely to introduce new taxes in the 2022 budget to help shore up revenue inflows to fund development projects.
According to the Member of Parliament for the Ofoase-Ayirebi constituency in the Central Region, it is important “new broad-based taxes” are introduced in the 2022 budget because of the demand for public services like the construction of roads and hospitals.
“Obviously, we would need to introduce some new broad-based taxes if we are to rake in the needed revenues to deliver what our people desire”.
“New taxes may have to be imposed on items that exclude the poor and do not have a high cascading effect so that it does not increase the difficulties that the Ghanaian is going through,” he said in an interview with journalists in Accra on Wednesday, November 10, 2021.
As the government gears up for the presentation of the 2022 Budget Statement and Economic Policy in Parliamenton Wednesday, November 17, there is an ongoing national conversation on how the government should go about its revenue mobilisation in order to close the gaping fiscal deficit in its books.
With dwindling revenue streams attributable to the slowdown in business activities occasioned by the Coronavirus pandemic, Ghana is lagging behind most of its peers within the West African sub-region as far as the tax to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio is concerned.
While Ghana is doing below 15%, countries in the sub-region like Cote d’Ivoire and Nigeria are hovering around an average of 18%, raising questions about whether or not increasing taxes in the 2022 budget will help the government shore up revenue inflows to fund development projects.
But the Minister of Information says the government has no choice than to find ways to mobilise funds through taxes to fund the demands for roads, schools, hospitals, etc.