Ranking Member of Parliament’s Finance Committee, Dr Casiel Ato Forson, has said that the Electronic Transaction Levy introduced by government will not support the growth of the banking sector.
Speaking on PM Express on Wednesday, Dr Forson indicated that the e-levy captured in the ‘Agyenkwa’ budget will only make businesses in the country suffer.
“We [Minority] have said that we are not going to accept this because it will not help the banking sector,” he told Evans Mensah.
According to him, the government only seeks to reverse all gains made in the banking sector through the e-levy.
His assertion come after the Finance Minister announced the introduction of the levy in the 2022 budget statement to increase tax revenue for the country.
“The government will charge an applicable rate of 1.75% on all electronic transactions covering mobile money payments, bank transfers, merchant payments, and inward remittances, which shall be borne by the sender except inward remittances, which will be borne by the recipient,” Ken Ofori-Atta announced.
According to him, the 1.75% tax on the e-levy is insensitive to Ghanaians due to the remittances involved.
He added that the remittances are equivalent to taxes on savings therefore Ghanaians should oppose it.
“The next item on the same e-transaction levy has to do with remittances… Kweku can you look at the faces of the constituents to tell them that the old lady in the village whose son and daughter is living abroad sending that person some small money for medical expenses, school fees you are saying that you are going to tax and take 1.75% from this meager money! What insensitivity is this? How can you be this wicked? He quizzed.
He further stated that “if care is not taken, under handling, black marketing will boom in this economy because people will go underground. The remittances that come through the banking system, that helps us show our reserves if care is not taken will go underground.”
However, Chairman of Parliament’s Finance Committee, Kwaku Kwarteng in reaction said Dr Forson’s prediction of a worsening scenario is farfetched.
He added that; “I don’t think it is right that because you are in opposition, you hope that these government policies will have the worst consequences possible.”
He advised that Ghanaians should not conclude on the issue but wait to see the legislation that would be brought on board by the Finance Ministry in the policy activation.
This is said was because Parliament has the right to exemptions if the need arises.
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