IEAG calls for removal of 1% COVID-19 levy in 2023 budget

 The Importers and Exporters Association of Ghana has called on the government to remove the 1 percent Covid-19 Health Re­covery Levy in the 2023 Budget Statement.

In an interview with the media in Accra on Monday according to Norvanreports, the General Secretary of the Importers and Exporters Association of Ghana, Samson AsakiAwingobit, said the government must do all it could to cushion the business commu­nity in its 2023 budget statement especially removing all nuisance taxes that made the cost of doing business in Ghana expensive.

MrAwingobit, inferring the obsolescence of the levy, ques­tioned its importance a year after its introduction and the disburse­ment of the proceeds.

“The government should tell us when that one per cent COVID-19 levy they have been taking will end, because we are no longer in COVID-19 era,” he quizzed.

He also bemoaned the other numerous taxes that members were expected to pay in their channel of trade, which he said was greatly impacting their trade.

“The other aspect is that we expect the government to, as a matter of fact, withdraw the VAT Amendment Act rate for us because we are paying so much at the port and if you are not able to recoup what you spent at the port at the end of the day after you make sales, then that becomes a challenge to the business commu­nity,” he said.

“If the government will not give us certain tax rebates, then the government should not come to introduce new taxes because currently, the cost of doing business in Ghana is very costly already,” he said.

The COVID-19 Health Recovery Levy is a stand-alone levy applied to the gross value of taxable supplies of goods and services provided under the Standard Rate and VAT Flat Rate Schemes.

The levy was introduced in 2021 by the government as part of revenue mobilisation measures to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic which bedeviled the Ghanaian economy.

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