The Bono Regional Group of the Tax Justice Coalition Ghana calls on the government to do the urgent steps to reduce corporate tax incentives in order to reduce lost revenue from those tax incentives.
The coalition also called for tax incentives to be granted only after a thorough cost-benefit analysis, including an impact assessment on poor and vulnerable groups.
The Tax Justice Coalition believes that such an analysis should be subject to public debate, scrutiny and parliamentary scrutiny.
The Bono Regional Secretary of Tax Justice Coalition Ghana, Simon Asore, made the demands during a media engagement in Sunyani.
Mr Asore said, “It is unacceptable that Ghana is struggling to fund Free SHS and other programs while the country is losing about $ 1.2 billion through tax incentives to multinational corporations”.
He explained that an important way to raise additional funds is to increase tax revenues, and the way to do that is to reduce or eliminate the tax incentives that many business organizations, especially the multinational ones, enjoy.
These tax expenditures, in his opinion, lead to a massive loss of potential revenue that could be spent on improving education and other public services.
“If you look at our laws on tax incentives, we’re so generous that we’ve given companies nearly 15 good years of tax exemption.
We at the Tax Justice Coalition therefore urge the government to reduce tax incentives that are normally given to corporate organizations only to attract foreign investment, ”he added.
Mr Asore recommended the creation of a public policy framework for tax incentives based on clear rules, applied transparently and subject to public and parliamentary scrutiny, and the provision of annual tax expense reports, in which the cost of the tax incentives as part of the state budget.