The government has revealed plans to extend the tax stamp policy to textiles in order to curb smuggling of the product in the country.
The move is aimed at protecting textile companies in the country and to increase jobs in the sector.
The assurance was contained in the 2019 budget presented to Parliament by the finance minister Thursday.
Ghana used to have a textile industry that employed around 30, 000 people, but in recent years the industry has fallen on hard times, and now the number employed is only around 5,000. It is Government’s aim to help revive this industry, which could be a big source of employment. So, in order to curtail smuggling and counterfeiting, which have been undermining the industry, we will extend the tax stamp policy to the textile products. Further, to make industry price-competitive, Government will zero-rate VAT on the supply of locally made textiles for a period of three years.
The Tax Stamp Policy emanates from the Excise Stamp Act, 2013 (Act 873).
The policy requires that specified excisable products are affixed with tax stamps with specific features designed and supplied by the Ghana Revenue Authority before they are delivered ex-factory, cleared from any port of entry and presented for sale.
The business community boycotted the launch of the tax stamps last year after stiff opposition. According to the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), the current state of the policy will slow their operation.
The CEO of AGI, Seth Twum Akwaboa, told Starr Business’ Osei Owusu Amankwaah that even though they are for the arrangement, some issues needed to be cleared first.
“The current state as it is; as far as the tax stamp is; if it is implemented the way it is most of the industrial operators have complained that it will slow down their production process,” he said.
He added that, “Some of them have very fast production lines, so if you introduce the tax stamp; which is physically stamped; it is not coming as a leaser print it will slow down the line. So that is what government is looking into. I believe that it is part of the reason why there have been so much delay.”
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