GhBudget: Anyone who transacts over Ghc100 a day is not poor – Ursula Owusu

After finance minister Ken Ofori-Atta announced a new 1.75 percent tax called E-levy on mobile money and all electronic transactions in the country yesterday 17th November 2021, Ursula Owusu Ekuful, now the Minister for Communications and Digitalization support the decision by Government initiative to tax anyone who transacts more than 100 Ghana cedis on Mobile money a day.

According to Ursula Owusu Ekuful, anyone who transacts more than 100 Ghana cedis on Mobile money a day cannot be described as a poor person and must be subject to the newly introduced E-Levy. She added that the Government is likely to raise over Ghc500 million a month from the E-Transactions levy.

Also ReadMobile money and bank transactions that are over GHS100 will now be taxed

Speaking to Lantam Papanko on GHOne TV Today on Thursday, November 18, 2021, The Minister for Communications and Digitalization said :

“The state is saying that if you are sending up to a GH100 a day, cumulatively you can send up to GH3000 a month, that is all going to be tax-free. Now if you have more than a GH100 to send a day, then you’re not poor.

“so if you are poor and you are in a position to send a GH100 a day, then we need to re-classify our definition of who the beneficiaries of these are. And it is only the sender who pays, not the recipient. Unlike the Telco's where both the sender and receiver pay.” 

“So if you are looking at bulk payments, cash outs, person to person transfers, wallet to bank transfers, as of October we are looking at about Ghc11 million, if you are looking at the merchants, debit payments, sending, transfers, transfers to vouchers and the cash outs we are looking at Ghc440 million.

“If you are looking at GHIPSS, and merchant payments and direct debit payments and organizations paying to customers and paying bills and sending money we are looking at Ghc45 million so in total the government can get about Ghc500 million from this in a month.”

“Total value of transactions for 2020 was estimated to be over 500 billion Cedis compared to GH¢78 billion Cedis in 2016 just 5 years ago, while total mobile money subscribers and active mobile money users have grown by an average rate of 18% and 16% respectively between 2016 and 2019. 

Mr. Speaker, it is becoming clear there exists the enormous potential to increase tax revenues by bringing into the tax bracket, transactions that could be best defined as being undertaken in the “shadow economy”.

“After considerable deliberations, the Government has decided to place a levy on all electronic transactions to widen the tax net and rope in the informal sector. This shall be known as the “Electronic Transaction Levy or E-Levy.”

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