GRA Announces Implementation Date for Seven Tax Amendments Effective January 1, 2024

The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has officially declared January 1, 2024, as the commencement date for the enforcement of seven tax amendments passed by parliament and signed into law by President Akufo-Addo. The announcement, detailed in a circular released by the GRA and published in various newspapers, also conveyed the authority’s commitment to developing administrative guidelines and issuing notices when necessary for the implementation of the amendments.

As part of the update, the GRA emphasized that payroll deductions for January 2024 should reflect the new rates outlined in the Income Tax (Amendment). The amendments, signed into law on December 29, 2024, cover a range of tax bills, including Value Added Tax (Amendment), Excise Duty (Amendment) (No. 2), Stamp Duty (Amendment), Emissions Levy Act, Exemptions (Amendment) Act, Customs Amendment Act, and Income Tax Amendment Act.

The VAT Bill, one of the amendments, aims to broaden the tax net, extend zero rates to locally manufactured products, introduce a zero rate for locally-produced sanitary towels, and exempt VAT on the import of electric vehicles for public transportation. However, it is anticipated that the application of these taxes might lead to a significant increase, exceeding 21%, in Motor Insurance Premiums starting next year.

The amended Excise Duty Bill intends to align excise duty rates on certain drinks with those on beer, reduce excise duty on plastics, and expand the coverage of excise duty on plastics to include imported plastic packaging.

The Emission Levy Act introduces a levy on carbon dioxide equivalent emissions from specified sectors and internal combustion engine vehicle emissions. Sectors like Construction, Manufacturing, Mining, Oil and Gas, Electricity, and the Heating Sector will pay ₵100 per tonne of emissions per month. Motorcycles and tricycles will pay 75 per annum for emissions, while motor vehicles, buses, coaches above 3000 capacity, cargo trucks, and articulated trucks will pay ₵300 per annum.

With the implementation of these tax bills, the government aims to generate over ₵5 billion in revenue in 2024. However, the development may lead to an increase in the cost of living, notably impacting motor insurance, which is expected to rise by more than 30%.

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