The government will withdraw e-levy if it’s not helpful – Kwaku Kwarteng

The Chairman of Parliament’s Finance Committee, Kwaku Kwarteng, says should the government survey that the e-levy is definitely not a supportive strategy, it will be removed.

His remark comes on the rear of a tweet by the main individual from the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Gabby Otchere-Darko, which said the e-demand isn’t satisfying government hopes.

He revealed that the Electronic Transactions Levy (e-levy) has produced under ¢60 million, nearly two months of its execution, and alluded to the government potentially looking for help from the IMF.

“What options are open to the government? The question should rather be: what option if adopted, will re-inject investor confidence in our economy? Even if we find the $3-5 billion required, will that help? E-levy which was to have given us some 600m by now has done less than 60m,” he said.

Responding to the remark, Kwaku Kwarteng expressed that it is still early to make assurances regardless of whether a significant strategy like the e-demand has fizzled.

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Talking on JoyNews’ PM Express, he said that the country needs to help the full rollout of the e-levy and was not prepared at this point, and approached Ghanaians to be still.

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“In fact, there is a sense in which the implementation has not fully even began and I say that because the e-levy is supposed to be collected on an electronic platform so that if you’re paying a 100 cedis by your momo if you try to pay the next 100 through your bank account, the system would know that you have already exhausted your threshold. That platform has not come into effect yet.

“Because it hasn’t come into effect, real-time monitoring is not possible. So even the figures we are seeing, I’m not sure we have collected from all the collecting agencies. What GRA is trying to do whilst they now seek to complete the building of the platform is to let the collecting agencies to declare. When they declare, I doubt if the GRA has even had the opportunity to audit. Then they will now take steps to audit. All that hasn’t happened,” he said.

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He expressed that the discussion about the disappointment of the e-levy is untimely and ought to be disregarded by the media.

“So even these figures that are being thrown out I don’t know if they’re right. Let us have patience, the e-levy is a policy that went through a lot before we could pass it, let us take our time. If eventually, it turns out not to be a helpful policy, the government itself will withdraw.

“But now, I think it’s early days yet and please let the media not start this discussion about a big policy like this that you would say has probably failed because somehow we expected that you start the policy and immediately the money will be coming in. We’re not going to get that,” he said.

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