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E Levy is on

By: Sani Abdul-Rahman

Electronic payments in Ghana now attract a 1.5% charge as the much-talked-about Electronic Transfer Levy took effect.

The E-Levy is charged on mobile money payments, bank transfers, merchant payments, and inward remittances. Transactions not exceeding GHS 100 per day are exempted.

The government targets to raise GH₵4.5 billion annually from the controversial revenue measure after it was cut to 1.5% from 1.7% originally proposed.

Minority Lawmakers who opposed the tax policy staged a walkout during its passage in Parliament, and have prayed to the Supreme Court to place an injunction on the implementation of the levy.

Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Ataa however argued that the policy would help expand the tax net and improve revenue performance.

“The revenue will be used to support job creation for the youth and improve our infrastructure,” Mr. Ofori-Ataa said during a town hall meeting in Kumasi.

E-levy charging entities alert customers

Social media went buzzing on Friday (April, 29) with screenshots of messages received by users from their banks and telecommunications companies, notifying them about e-levy deductions from May 1, 2022.

While the E-levy is expected to help the government reduce its fiscal deficit this year, a section of the public is anxious that the tax will further burden them.

Phased implementation

On April 29, the Ghana Revenue Authority announced it could not fully implement the tax policy as planned, as some charging entities have not completed signing up to the E-levy system.

“Following Ghana Revenue Authority’s assessment of the general readiness of some charging entities to integrate with the E-levy Management System, the Commissioner-General has decided on a modified phased approach for the implementation of the levy from May 1,” the GRA said in a statement on Friday.

The Member of Parliament for Ningo Pramrapm, Sam George Nartey, had earlier stated that the GRA was not ready to roll out the e-levy on full-scale. He claimed that the revenue administrator was yet to provide the Programming Interface (API) to telecom operators.

Injunction against E-levy implementation

On April 19, Minority Leader in Parliament, Haruna Idrissu, and two other opposition lawmakers urged the Supreme Court to restrain the Ghana Revenue Authority from implementing the E-levy.

Mr. Iddrisu, his colleagues Mahama Ayariga and Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, dragged the Attorney General to the Apex Court challenging the constitutionality of the E-levy passage.

The Court however slated the hearing of the case for May 4, 2022, three days after the E-levy has been implemented.

Read also:

Telcos set for E-Levy take off

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