Mid-year budget must give tax breaks– GNCCI


Mid-year budget must give tax breaks– GNCCI

The Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GNCCI) is urging government to consider introducing some tax reliefs in the upcoming mid-year budget review – a move it said will offer much-needed respite for businesses and spur recovery.

The Chamber is of the view that the unaccustomed austerity measures introduced in the 2023 budget to meet conditions of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout programme have gravely impacted local businesses; and that as the macro-economic conditions are showing signs of improvement, government must remove some of these “tormenting” taxes.

GNCCI’s president, Clement Osei-Amoako, said the review must demonstrate government’s resolve to ease the suffering of businesses as the Minister of Finance prepares to present the mid-year budget review in coming days.

“Government sought assistance from the IMF, and through that implemented a series of reforms. These reforms included tightening monetary policy, raising taxes and implementing automatic adjustments to utility tariffs among others. While these actions were intended to rectify fiscal imbalances and promote economic stability, they have resulted in higher operational costs for businesses operating in the country. Regrettably, numerous local businesses are collapsing while others are relocating in response to these challenges.

“It is crucial that government swiftly reconsiders its tax policies and streamlines the tax structure to ensure fairness, reasonableness and support for business development without any delay,” he fumed.


He spoke at an event dubbed ‘Chamber Bazaar’ in Accra, and lamented that tax measures such as the Excise Duty, Growth and Sustainability Levy, as well as high utility tariffs, currency depreciation and high fuel prices are having a negative impact on businesses.

While calling for some tax policies such as the COVID-19 Levy, Growth and Sustainability Levy among others to be relaxed or revised downward, Mr. Osei-Amoako said government must also consider innovative ways to widen the tax net.

The GNCCI is of the firm belief that by creating a favourable business environment, government can unlock the private sector’s true potential and drive resilient economic growth, leading to a prosperous Ghana.

Expensive ports thwarting growth prospects

Another area the Chamber believes needs a rethink is the country’s ports. It bemoaned the huge fees and charges producers pay when importing raw materials for onward production.

It said the current high import duties on raw materials and machinery meant for local production is not the way if government is serious about promoting industrialisation and supporting domestic businesses to be competitive within the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

Chamber Bazaar

The Chamber’s president made these strong requests on the sidelines of the three-day Chamber Bazaar launch in Accra, under the theme ‘Harnessing business potentials through trade fairs and exhibitions’. The Bazaar aims to provide a platform for businesses to showcase their products, services and innovative ideas to a diverse audience.

“The ‘Chamber Bazaar’ is yet another initiative by the GNCCI to support local businesses and contribute to overall economic growth of the country. The GNCCI remains fully committed to fulfilling its legislative mandate of promoting and protecting the commercial and industrial interests of our country,” he said.

Vice President of the Liberia National Chamber of Commerce, Natty Davis – a guest at the launch, commended the GNCCI for the innovative initiatives it keeps introducing to support the country’s business growth.

He said the Liberian Chamber is engaging its counterparts in Ghana to collaborate, build synergy and work together leveraging on each other’s competitive advantage to boost intra-African trade.

Some of the brands present at the exhibition included Extra Fashion, Salem Upholstery, African Diamond Cable Co. Ltd., Amalena Children’s Haven and T.T. Brothers Ltd., among others.

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GNBCC | News