The government intends to go ahead with a new 1.5 percent rate for the electronic transactions levy, despite the rejection by the Minority in Parliament and opposition from a section of the public.
Speaking on The Big Issue, a deputy Finance Minister, John Kumah, said the government was confident in the plan it had with respect to the levy.
“We believe the 1.5 percent that we have in terms of the analysis that we have…is more robust and has been developed to a point that government can come in with an intervention without seeing the negative impact that has happened elsewhere,” Mr. Kumah said.
He stressed further that the levy would ultimately benefit Ghanaians.
“Why would an extra 1.5 percent make people feel like they are no longer going to [use mobile money] when they know the extra 1.5 percent is even to their own benefit because, at the end of the day, these taxes are for you and me.”
The government met with the Minority on Friday, where the reduction from 1.75 percent to 1.5 percent was rejected.
According to Citi News sources, the reduction was informed by concessions from the telcos to reduce their 1 percent charge on transactions by up to 0.25 percent.
The e-levy was introduced by the government in the 2022 Budget on basic transactions related to digital payments and electronic platform transactions.
The rate in the budget was 1.75 percent and is to apply to electronic transactions that are more than GH¢100 on a daily basis.
This is in addition to the 1 percent telcos charge on transactions.
According to the budget, up to 0.25 percentage points of the 1.5 percent e-transaction levy or 16.7 percent of the yield from the levy, should be used to support road infrastructure development.
Ten percent of the 0.25 percentage points, i.e. 1.67 percent of the yield from the levy, is to be dedicated to the improvement in public transportation, including the purchase of buses.
The levy has sparked controversy because of its impact on mobile money transactions and poor Ghanaians that use it.