2019 will be a better year for Ghanaians – Ofori-Atta assures

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The Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, believes the year 2019 will be a better year for the Ghanaian economy following the foundation laid by the government.

He said in order to address the major hurdle of domestic revenue mobilization, about 10,000 NABCO recruits have been assigned to the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), to help the Authority collect more revenue for the country.

Speaking on The Point of View on Citi TV, Mr. Ofori-Atta said the government has also put in place several measures to rake in more revenue from the mining sector and other sectors of the economy.

“2019 is going to be a much better year, and it’s going to be a better year because one of the Achilles heels has always been the issue of domestic revenue mobilization. How do we get digitization, how do we get enforcement? And I think the anchor of the 10,000 NABCO people are going to have a dramatic difference in how we organize ourselves for compliance going forward, and the type of work we have done in the mining industry, and the type of work we are doing for property taxes are imminent,” he told Host of show, Bernard Avle on Monday.

Delay in policy implementation causing the revenue shortfall

Ken Ofori Atta, on the show, further attributed the shortfalls in revenue, despite new tax measures, to the delays in enforcing the tax policies.

He is however anticipating that government will improve its revenue collection going forward with the rolling out of some of the tax compliance measures in the 2019 budget.

“We have not been able to accomplish all of that in terms of the takeoff for the VAT decoupling. There was also some expectations of the electronic point of sale systems that have not yet gone into operations. My feeling is that there is a lot of learning that one has gone through this 22 months,” he said.

We’ve reduced the impact of hardships on Ghanaians

The Finance Minister, while presenting the 2019 budget statement in Parliament last week, said efforts put in place by the Akufo-Addo government within the last 22 months has helped to reduce the impact of hardship in the country.

Although he said the country is not out of the woods yet, Ofori-Atta commended Ghanaians for their perseverance during the trying times.

“…on behalf of the President, I wish to thank you all, the citizens of this country, for your patience, perseverance, sacrifices, activism and partnership that you have extended to this government.”

“Mr. Speaker, we have, in the last two budget years, taken some tough decisions to get the country out of some very rough seas. We are not proud of the fact that there is still hardship in the country. But we are comforted by the fact that we have managed to ease the impact of the hardships that the Ghanaian people had been resigned to prior to December 7, 2016. We are not there yet. We still have a long way to go in fulfilling the manifest destiny of this blessed land,” he added.

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