Spare parts dealers at Abossey-Okai in Accra, have lauded government for the decision to scrap taxes on the importation of vehicle parts. The traders said the move relieves them of a huge burden that has over the years prevented them from expanding their businesses.
When Citi News’ Kojo Agyemang got to Abbosey-Okai after the announcement today [Thursday], the area was thrown into a frenzy with most dealers in a jubilant mood. Abossey Okai is one of Ghana’s major destinations for auto mechanic services and auto parts sales.
Ghana’s Finance Minister, Ken Ofori Atta, during his presentation of the 2017 national budget statement and economic policy in Parliament, announced among others some twelve tax scrapping and in some cases a reduction, including the cancellation of levies imposed on head porters popularly known as ‘kayayei’.
Ahead of the 2016 general elections, the then incumbent president, John Mahama of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party’s (NPP) Nana Akufo-Addo, both made promises of bettering the lot of traders in the area, by addressing issues of duties on the importation of spare parts, which is a major part of business undertaken by the traders there.
Following the announcement of the NPP’s Akufo-Addo as the winner of the December 2016 presidential elections, dealers in the area announced a discount on their products allegedly in solidarity with the new government, a claim which was subsequently denied.
Below is a list of the taxes abolished and reviewed by the government.
– 1 percent Special Import Levy;
– 17.5 percent VAT/NHIL on financial services;
– 17.5 percent VAT/NHIL on selected imported medicines, that are not produced locally;
– Initiate steps to remove import duties on raw materials and machinery for production within the context of the ECOWAS Common External Tariff (CET)
– 17.5 percent VAT/NHIL on domestic airline tickets; – 5 percent VAT/NHIL on Real Estate sales;
– Excise duty on petroleum; – Special petroleum tax rate from 17.5 percent to 15 percent; – Duty on the importation of spare parts;
– Levies imposed on kayayei by local authorities;
– Taxation, the gains from realisation of securities listed on the Ghana Stock Exchange or publicly held securities approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC);
– Reduce National Electrification Scheme Levy from 5 percent to 3 percent;
– Reduce Public Lighting Levy from 5 percent to 2 percent;
– Replace the 17.5 VAT/NHIL rate with a flat rate of 3 percent for traders; and
– Implement tax credits and other incentives for businesses that hire young graduates.