‘Creative arts industry needs proper tax regime’

Nana Fredua-Agyeman Ofori-Atta, the Board Chairman of the National Theatre, has called for stakeholder discussions with government for proper tax regime for the creative arts industry.

Nana Ofori-Atta made the call in Accra at a stakeholder forum on the Meaning of the 2019 Budget and Taxation Regime for the Creative Sector.

The Board Chairman lauded government’s effort to commence feasibility studies as stated in the budget to set up a Creative Arts Fund to support the industry.

He explained that the initiative would help to make available resources to modernise, sustain and develop the sector.

Nana Ofori-Atta said even though government had indicated the preparedness to support the development and growth of the creative arts industry, practitioners in the sector must come up with quality products to project its image.

He expressed concern about the bureaucracy in the public sector in releasing funds to the industry, urging authorities to be proactive in addressing the challenge.

Nana Ofori-Atta urged practitioners in the industry to be united and have one voice to articulate their concerns to the authorities for redress.

He said the creative arts industry contributed to national development because many countries had gained prominence on the international stage due to the influence of their creative artistes.

Dr Nii Moi Thompson, an Economist, speaking on the topic; “The National Economy and the 2019 Budget: The Implications on the Socio-Cultural Sector,” urged practitioners in the industry to create a good identity to project the culture and values of the country in a positive way.

Dr Thompson, who is also the former Director General of the National Development Planning Commission, stated that the country’s educational system could be sustained when it was aligned to employment opportunities.

He gave an example of Tunisia, whose tertiary institutions ranks among the highest in Africa but lagged job opportunities and said there was the need to relate education to job opportunities.

He said education should be seen as a community service necessary for national development.

Touching on the creative arts sector, Dr Thompson urged government to create an enabling environment for the industry to succeed.

He said proper sanitation played a critical role in the country’s development and it was imperative for the creative arts to work together with the industry’s stakeholders to meet the Sustainable Development Goals on Sanitation.

Some of the participants at the forum commended government for launching the ‘See Ghana, Eat Ghana, Wear Ghana and Feel Ghana’ programme to boost the local economy and enable Ghanaians appreciate their heritage.

They called for a national discourse with the Ghana Revenue Authority on how best to strategise the tax regime system for the creative arts.


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