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New law to track VAT electronically in the offing

Feb. 23, 2018, 3:22 p.m.

Parliament will soon pass a law that will track all VAT issued at various retail centers across the country.

The Fiscal Electronic Device Bill is expected to connect all Point of Sale (PoS) devices with the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA)’s systems.

The move is to ensure that VAT issuing companies do not under declare their values and also punish tax evaders.

The Chairman of the Finance Committee of Parliament, Dr. Mark Assibey Yeboah, tells Citi Business News he is hopeful the law will increase revenue from VAT.

“Most of the persons entitled to pay VAT do not issue receipts; so it leads to suppression of sales and the tax thereof so what we intend to do is to legislate so that every person entitled to pay VAT would have a cash register so that it will ring and this would also have backend where data would be transmitted to the Ghana Revenue Authority.”

Parliament on Thursday, February 22, 2018, took the Fiscal Electronic Device Bill through the second reading on the floor of the House.

Dr. Mark Assibey Yeboah is also confident the next stage would be facilitated next week to get the law passed as soon as possible.

“In essence, there will be better tracking and sales volume will be captured and then the VAT or tax thereof will be collected. So we intend to take the Bill to the consideration stage where the nitty gritties would be ironed out,” he indicated.

The decision to connect the PoS devices is in fulfillment of government’s plans to improve domestic revenue collection.

The move also comes at a time where the government has reduced the Special Petroleum Tax to 13% which is said to cost the economy at least 48 million cedis in tax revenue losses.

For this year, the government is targeting total tax revenue of about 51 billion cedis.

This measures against the 62 billion cedis the government is targeting to spend for this year.