Stop giving out tax waivers to mining companies – Experts
Adnan Adams Mohammed
They observe that, it has been a trend of all governments for giving out huge waivers to mining companies causing the country to lose revenue from the mining sector.
But Mr. Kuyole objected saying that, government has technically given out lots of revenues in the sector, which have not been put out in the public domain, indicating government has reduced royalty rate from 5 to 3 percent.
“Beyond that, we are also cutting down corporate tax which is supposed to be 35% to 32%. These are all sources of revenue loss,” he stated.
The mining sector has been a major contributor to the growth and development of Ghana, contributing 1.35 billion cedis and 1.65 billion cedis to the country’s revenue in 2015 and 2016 respectively.
In 2015, the total contribution of the sector accounted for 16 per cent of domestic revenue by Ghana Revenue Authority.
Figures from the Bank of Ghana also show the minerals sector accounts for 45.5 per cent of gross merchandise exports making it the leading foreign exchange earner.
Despite these contributions, the mining sector holds much more great potentials for domestic revenue generation.
Mr. Kuyole wondered why Ghana keeps cutting down on corporate taxes for mining companies, saying “If there is the need to make reforms in the tax, why then do we cut down corporate taxes?”
He has thus underscored the need to build capacity of agencies in the sector in order for them to negotiate mining contracts well by putting the interest of the country first.
“Going forward, we need enough capacity to be able to negotiate and put the country’s interest first so that we wouldn’t act quickly when it comes to giving out mining concessions.
“What is important is that government has to enhance state agencies that lead negotiations and eschew partisan politics from all negotiations as well. We need professional negotiation jobs and make sure that we stop the practice of giving out tax concessions to the mining companies,” Mr. Kuyole advised.