The government’s decision to remove customs revenue check-points from major road across the country is affecting revenue collection, Mr Paul Kwesi Ahiakpor, Sector Commander, Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Customs Division, Tamale has said.
He said importers always took advantage of the country’s porous borders to smuggle goods into the country adding the lack of revenue check-points along major roads meant that such importers would always try to evade tax.
Mr Ahiakpor was speaking at a press soiree organized by the GRA in Tamale on Friday night as part of efforts to deepen relations with the media in the region to help in ensuring tax collection.
The government, last year, took a decision to remove all customs revenue check-points from major roads in the country to ensure free movement of goods.
Mr Ahiakpor said as with all policies, with time, there might be need to review the decision to remove customs revenue check-points on the roads to ensure that smuggled goods were impounded on the roads.
He said the Customs Division of the GRA in the region collected GHc156.51 million in 2017 as against a target of GHc190.73 million.
He said even though some importers tried hard to evade tax, the GRA was also on the move to impound smuggled goods and collect the appropriate tax to shore up the country’s revenue.
Mr Ahiakpor, therefore, appealed to the media and the citizenry to give credible intelligence to the GRA to enable it to impound smuggled goods in the system for the importers to pay the appropriate taxes and penalties for the development of the country.
Alhaji Rashid Yakubu, Deputy Head of Tamale Medium Tax Office (MTO) said the MTO, which covers Norther, Upper East and Upper West Regions, collected GHc39,147,543.28 in 2017.
Alhaji Yakubu said the MTO was charged to collect GHc47,661,362.06 this year adding it had exceeded its first quarter target.
Meanwhile, the Small Tax Payer Office of the GRA in Tamale also collected GHc21,258,532.48 in 2017 as against a target of GHc25,961,820.18.