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GRA confiscates carbonated beverages without tax stamps


The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) Taskforce, on Tuesday, confiscated about 41 packs of Special Red Grape drinks, which do not bear Excise Tax Stamps affixed on them.

The products were seized from the Kate Laryea Store at Makola, in the Central Business District of Accra during a Monitoring and Enforcement excise to check the level of tax compliance with the Excise Tax Stamp policy.

The policy is to ensure that the products are not counterfeited to protect the health of consumers and help generate more revenue for the nation.

Mr Kwabena Anto Apau, the Head of the GRA Taskforce Unit, at a media briefing after the exercise, said it was impressive that many companies were complying.

“Danbri Company Limited, distributors of pharmaceutical products, for instance, has its tax certificate intact, while some of the depots we visited in the shops all have their tax stamps affixed on the products,” he said

Mr Apau said the exercise would continue to Friday, February 22, with a focus on all carbonated drinks, energy drinks and alcoholic drinks in the Central Business District.

“In the past we have visited the malls, and other businesses outside the central business area, but this time we are in Makola, and we will be visiting places in Kaneshie, Okaishie and other areas to continue with the exercise.”

He said the Taskforce had, however, noticed that both some foreign and imported products were not affixed with tax stamps, stressing that, there was the need to streamline the system.

On the seized products, Mr Apau said after 31 days if the owners failed to report to the Authority to explain why they did not have the stamps, they would forfeit them.

Additionally, their outfit would trace the manufacturers of the seized products to ascertain why the products were not affixed with tax stamps, since some of the products were manufactured in January, 2019.

Mr Apau, the Chief Revenue Officer, also cautioned retailers not to display their wares or products for sale without tax stamps on them.

“Anybody who flouts the directives would face the law,” he warned.

He said the Taskforce had picked intelligence that some of the products were brought in from neighbouring countries like Togo and Nigeria where  it is working assiduously to ensure that the entry points were effectively manned.

He urged the public to always look out for products with the excise tax stamp and desist from patronising those without them.

The Tax Stamp Policy, which emanates from the Excise Stamp Act, 2013 (Act 873), was launched in September 2018. The Tax Stamps are small stickers with security features supplied by government to some manufacturers and importers to be affixed to their products before they are released onto the market.

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