Changes in Ghana’s tax policy and administration were the focus of a training workshop in Accra Thursday for accountants and finance and audit officers of corporate and government institutions.

The training is part of the continuing professional development of members of the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants and was on the topic, Essential Updates on Taxation.

Mr George Kwatia, Tax Partner of Price Waterhouse Coopers who took participants through the contemporary history of Ghana’s tax regime, noted that political undertones are critical in formulation of tax policies. Governments have introduced tax policies based on their political inclination. However there is next to no incentive to encourage tax payment or claiming tax refund.

Mr Kwatia said the Ghana Revenue Authority has put under one umbrella the three revenue collection agencies with a view to ensuring cohesion and better accountability.

He explained the 2011 new threshold of taxes like the Airport tax, national fiscal stabilisation tax, Communications Services Tax, Vehicle importation tax among others and reminded ACCA members to be abreast of the tax regimes to inform their advice to clients.

Mr Kwatia said though there were difficulties in the rationale for the introduction of some taxes and penalties for flouting, not many accountants have the will to challenge them in the court of law. He therefore advised compliance to avoid embarrassment.

This is the second Continuing Professional Development seminar for members of the ACCA. In her remarks, Mrs Sylvia Lawson, Ghana ACCA Network Panel Chairperson stressed the critical importance of continuing professional development to the work of accountants and financial managers.

She charged members to take the training seriously so they can apply the knowledge in their work.