A member of the government’s Economic Management Team, Dr Anthony Akoto Osei, has clarified the new tax on luxury vehicles, revealing it will not exempt public servants.
When the tax was announced on Thursday by the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, many doubted the fairness of the new tax if, like similar taxes, it will exempt civil servants and government officials who are wont to owning the types of vehicles targeted by the tax.
However, shedding light on the novel tax on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show, Dr Osei, who is also the Minister for Monitoring and Evaluation, said every Ghanaian will be liable to pay the tax if they fall within the payment bracket, including Ministers and Parliamentarians.
“They are Ghanaians, aren’t they? Almost all government workers who drive a four-wheel vehicle. If you have a private four-wheel [drive] you have to pay the price. There is no problem with that. That is clearly understood,” he told Super Morning Show host, Daniel Dadzie.
Apart from generating revenue for the government, the new tax on luxury vehicles are also aimed at fighting environmental pollution, Dr Osei said.
Photo: Dr Anthony Akoto Osei is a member of government's Economic Management Team.
Presenting the Mid-Year Review of the 2018 Budget in Parliament on Thursday, Mr Ofori-Atta announced two new measures aimed at boosting revenue into the depleting government coffers – a tax on vehicles with engine capacities of 3 litres or more and income tax on earners of GHS10,000 and above.
For the Luxury Vehicle Tax, vehicles with engine capacities of 3.0 – 3.5 litres will attract an annual tax of GHS1,000; those with engine capacities of 3.6 – 4.0 litres will pay GHS1,500 annually; while 4.1 litres and above are to an annual tax of GHS2,000.
Commercial vehicles are, however, exempt from the luxury vehicle tax.
Tax on wealthy is good
The two new taxes introduced on Thursday are seen as government's strategy to tax the rich to finance government projects.
Economist with the University of Ghana Professor, Peter Quartey, has said the new taxes on high-income earners are good if only the monies raised will be used efficiently.
According to him, no amount of taxes raised will be enough if there is no efficient use of the resources.
Listen to Dr Akoto Osei on the Super Morning Show in the audio link below.