Ghana’s domestic revenue mobilisation receives a boost …..As 60th tax office with TRIPS becomes operational

Ghana’s quest to increase domestic revenue mobilisation has received a major boost as the 60th tax office hooked onto the Total Revenue Integrated Processing System (TRIPS) is set to be rolled out this week.

The operationalisation of the office will ensure that more individuals and entities are roped into the tax net to enhance government’s revenue mobilisation efforts.

Speaking in an interview with Times Business in Accra on Tuesday, Chris Holden, GeGovernment Project Manager described the rolling out of the 60th office as a landmark achievement for the country as it marked the first Ghana had a nationwide tax system.

TRIPS is an e-Tax software solution for tax administration under the e-Government project by the Ministry of Communications.
The e-Tax solution package was developed and deployed for the Ghana Revenue Authority by the Ghana Community Network Services Limited (GCNet) with a self-service portal that provides online services to taxpayers.

The first of its kind in West Africa, TRIPS was designed and deployed in 2011 as a business automation process system that seeks to streamline and bring transparency in the business operations of the Ghana Revenue Authority.
Mr. Holden said the rollout would significantly increase the much needed domestic revenue mobilisation.

In 2016, more than GH¢11 billion was also mobilised through TRIPS compared to almost GH¢9 billion and GH¢3billion mobilised in 2015 and 2014.

Data shows that more than 154,000 tax returns were processed through TRIPS between January and July in 2017, representing a 43 per cent increase in the same period in 2016.

From January to July 2017, over 151,000 new Tax Identification Numbers (TINs) have been issued, bringing the total to 890,000 since the launch of TRIPS.

On the rolling of the 60th office would this translate into revenue generation, Mr. Holden said expanding the system to cover more offices across the country would translate into more revenue generation as more individuals and businesses would be roped into the tax system.

“First time we actually had this offices connected to essential tax system an ideal of revenue collection for the regions where we have individuals and businesses that can pay tax,” he said.

He said the reliance on a few tax payers located in Accra would be a thing of the past as the entire country would be covered as part of the project.

He said the system exchanges real time data with a number of other government systems, including the National Identification Authority, Driver Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) for the online validation of individual’s identity documents; Registrar-General’s Department for the automated creation and sharing of tax identification numbers; Customs for the identification of importers and exports and also share data with the Controller and Accountant General’s Department.

By David Adadevoh

 

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