Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), Yofi Grant, has said the application of tax incentives in the tax exemptions bill should be applied to a new tier of investors.
The new tier of investors he described as ‘responsible sustainable investors,’ are foreign direct investors who help the country achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
“At GIPC, one of the suggestions we have made in the exemptions reform is to move away from strategic investors to another tier called the ‘responsible sustainable investor’ where we are suggesting that we should apply our incentives to only foreign direct investors who enable us achieve the SDGs, partner with the local people in production processes and engage in other things that are useful to the economy and bring back value to the economy,” Mr Grant averred.
“It’s a way of saying well we will give you something but you also give us something in return, and this is to ensure that there is mutuality in the application of incentives,” he added.
Speaking further on the sidelines of the Q2 CEOs Breakfast Meeting on Tuesday, May 25, Mr Grant shared a view similar to that of Mr Daniel Nuer, head of the Tax Policy Unit at the Finance Ministry, asserting that the exemptions bill is necessary to check abuses of exemptions by foreign investors.
“While government recognise the importance of exemptions, there have also been a lot of exemptions abuse and although it’s not more than 5% of the total taxes collected, it is right that it’s checked through reforms,” he posited.
Mr Grant is of the view that government and the private sector need to engage one another and see how the country’s tax regime could be optimally improved as well as ensure that the private sector is convinced and comfortable with the fact that it has to pay taxes for the development of the country.
“We need to give businesses the confidence that the tax regime we have is fair and mutually beneficial,” he added.
The second quarter CEOs’ Breakfast Meeting held under the theme: Understanding Ghana’s Tax and Exemptions Regime Towards Increasing Investor Confidence in the Business, facilitated discussions on Ghana’s tax and exemptions regime giving a breakdown of the country’s tax system to aid investors make informed decisions.