Automobile dealers want govt to extend tax holiday

The Automobile Dealers Union of Ghana (ADUG) has appealed to government to extend the tax holiday and rebate offered to registered automobile manufacturers, under the Automotive Development Programme, to cover all car dealers in the country.

According to the union, even though the Act, (Act, 2020) was intended to boost the automobile industry, sections of the law were discriminate and would affect local dealers if allowed to stay on the books.

“Sections of the Act if allowed to remain will negatively impact our businesses by adding extra cost of duty payment to importers,” President of the ADUG, Mr Eric Kwaku Boateng said.

Addressing a news conference in Accra  yesterday, he said Clause One of Section 55 of Act 891 granted tax holidays to registered assemblers and manufacturers living abroad, who import cars into the country, but required local dealers to pay additional 35 per cent duty.

Mr Boateng said “the Act grants manufacturers or assemblers who imports Toyota Land Cruiser V8 into the country under the programme, the duty payable on it as free, but if a local dealer imports the same vehicle you need to pay plus 35 per cent on the duty payable”.

He said that there was the need for clause two of the act to be amended since it was not in the interest of the industry.

Mr Boateng asked the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta to implement Clause Five of the Customs Amendment Act (2020), which allowed him to issue an Executive Instrument to specify the date on which motor vehicle over ten years of age may not be imported into the country.

President of ADUG, however, praised government for allowing some automobile companies to build assembling plants in the country.

“We commend the government’s efforts and initiatives for bringing automobile giant manufacturers like Toyota, Nissan, Sino truck, Renault, and VW into the country to establish their outlets,” he said.

According to the union, the venture would open up the economy and create jobs in the country.

The Customs Amendment Act (2020) came into force in March this year, to revise the Customs Act, 2015 (ACR 891).

The aim of the amended Act was to provide incentives for automotive manufacturers and assemblers under the Ghana Automotive Manufacturing Development Programme by prohibiting the importation of salvaged motor vehicles and specific vehicles over ten years age into the country.

The Act, was also meant to increase import duty on specific motor vehicles and provide exemptions for the security agencies and officers of the security agencies.

By: Cliff Ekuful

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