Ghana Parliament approves new phone taxes
GOVERNMENT| July 8, 2013, 6 p.m.
By Nana Appiah Acquaye, Accra, Ghana
Ghana’s Parliament has passed the Customs and Excise Amendment Bill, 2013 to re-impose a 20% import duty on telephone sets and other products. The telephone sets include mobile, cellular and satellite phones. It is assumed that the imposition of the levy on telephone handsets for the remaining half of 2013 would accrue GH¢49.8 million while the tax on plastic products would yield GH¢26 million.
The Deputy Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Mr. Cassiel Ato Baah Forson, who moved the motion for the bill to be passed on the floor of parliament, was optimistic about the realization of the said amount.
Previously, the government removed import duties on telephone sets in a bid to reduce prices of telephone sets to encourage usage. However, the gesture, according to the report of the Finance Committee, had not yielded the desired results as prices of telephone sets had increased over the period contrary to the government’s intention hence the need to reintroduce it on telephone sets to generate revenue and also create an even field for locally manufactured telephone handsets to favorably compete with imported ones.
It is estimated that the imposition of the levy on telephone handsets for the remaining half of 2013 would accrue GH¢49.8 million while the tax on plastic products would yield GH¢26 million.
Meanwhile the Communications Service Tax (Amendment) Bill has been withdrawn from Parliament for further consultation and changes to some clauses which have generated controversy.
The Communications Service Tax (Act 754), also known as Talk Tax, was passed in 2008. The amendment seeks to impose taxes on receivers of international calls and also for the receipt of text messages, as well as electronic mails. The proposed amount to be charged for each call or e-mail is equivalent to six cents (US). Any telecom operator which fails to comply and exact the charges will face sanctions, including a revoking of its operating licence by the National Communications Authority (NCA).
MORE GOVERNMENT NEWS
NITDA’s Taraba Smart City project receives global recognitionThe Jalingo City’s Smart IDP Tracking and Monitoring project, designed and implemented under the NITDA Nigeria Smart City Initiative, has won global recognition. Read More
NCA Chairman calls for strong ties between Africa’s telecom regulatorsThe Chairman of Ghana’s National Communications Authority, Eugene Baffoe Bonnie, has emphasised the need for regulatory bodies in the African telecommunications industry to close ranks to ensure a stronger collaborations. Read More
Cybercrooks steal N127b annually in Nigeria, says ComTech ministerNigeria’s ComTech Minister, Barr Adebayo Shittu, has lamented that Nigeria loses N127 billion annually to cyber thieves, warning that if it is not addressed, it posed a great deal of threat to the national economy. Read More
Nigeria's ComTech minister restates need for ICT UniversityNigeria’s Minister of Communications, Adebayo Shittu, has restated the need for the establishment of an ICT University in Nigeria, the first of its kind in Africa. Read More
Nigeria tax chief to go after telcos, othersThe Executive Chairman of Nigeria’s Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Mr Tunde Fowler, has said the focus of the service this quarter, was to recoup taxes owed by telecoms firms, airlines, and deposit money banks (DMBs). Read More
NCA to mark 20th anniversary with Symposium on RegulationsGhana’s National Communications Authority is set to hold a two day symposium in Accra as part of events to mark its 20th anniversary as a regulator. Read More
NCC pays N1.4 tr into Federation Account, says DambattaThe Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has paid over N1.4 trillion to the Federation Account, the CEO of the regulatory body, Prof Garba Dambatta has said. Read More
NCC pays N70b to Nigeria GovtThe Nigerian Communications Commission says it has remitted N70 billon to the Federation Account in the last one year of Prof Umar Danbatta’s appointment as executive vice chairman and CEO. Read More
GCAA move to register drone operations in GhanaThe Ghana Civil Aviation Authority, the body in charge of running the country’s aviation industry, has embarked on an exercise to register remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS), popularly referred to as drones with effect from September this year. Read More
FEATURED STORYFirst-ever Africa Barclays Accelerator programme concludes
Ten fintech companies have concluded the first-ever Barclays Accelerator, powered by Techstars in Africa.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHEthical Hacking students can’t get a heck of a job
Botswana ethical hacking students report that they are failing to break into the local job market.