The Minister for Communications and Digitalisation, Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, says 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.
“The state is saying that if you are sending up to a GH100 a day, cumulatively you can send up to GH3,000 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 really are poor and you are in a position to send a GH100 a day, then we need to re-classify our definition of who really the beneficiaries of these are. And it is only the sender who pays, not the recipient. Unlike the telcos where both the sender and receiver pays,” Mrs Owusu-Ekuful said in an interview on GH Today on Thursday, November 18.
She added that the government is likely to raise over Ghc500 million a month from the E-Trasanctions levy.
“So if you are looking at bulk payments, cashouts, 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 cashouts we are looking at Ghc440 million.
“If you are looking at GHIPSS, and merchant payments and direct debit payments and organisations paying to customers and paying bills and sending money we are looking at Ghc45 million so in total it is possible for the government to get about Ghc500 million from this in a month.”
Reading the 2022 budget on Wednesday, November 17, the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta said to compensate for the abolishment of road tolls, the government is looking to introduce innovative ways of raising revenue such as the proposed 1.75% phone transactions levy payable by mobile money users per transaction above GHC100.
He said this will help the government to shore up revenue inflows to fund road projects in the country.
“Total value of transactions for 2020 was estimated to be over GHS 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,” he said.