The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has recorded about GH¢25.9 billion tax revenue for the first half of this year against the projected GH¢26.1 billion for the period.
About GH¢18.4 billion of that revenue accrued from Domestic Tax Revenue (DTR), while Customs Division of the GRA raked in over GH¢7.4 billion.
Additionally, about GH¢1.2 billion was realized from other sources, including the energy debt recovery levy, energy sector account and the pollution and sanitation levy, bringing the total revenue for the half year to about GH¢27.2 billion.
The non-oil revenue performance of GH¢25.9 billion within the half-year fell short of the budget for the same period by GH¢212.9 million, representing 0.8 per cent.
A deputy Commissioner of the GRA in charge of Strategy, Research, Policy and Programmes, Dr Charles Addae, made this known at the Minister’s Press Briefing organized by the Information Ministry yesterday.
The press briefing focused on GRA’s half-year revenue performance for 2021 and the measures being implemented to improve it going forward.
In the 2021 budget statement, the government tasked the GRA to collect non-oil tax revenue of GH¢57.1 billion for the 2021 fiscal year.
That figure represented 25.7 per cent of growth over the non-oil tax revenue performance of 2020 fiscal year which was GH¢45.4 billion.
Also, it was equivalent to 13.5 per cent of the projected gross domestic product (GDP) for 2021 fiscal year.
Although the budget for the GRA was GH¢57.1 billion, the authority raised the target to GH¢60 billion.
At the press briefing, Dr Addae said although the half-year non-oil tax revenue fell marginally below the projection, the 47.6 per cent recorded within the period was better than the previous five years where the performance averaged 46 per cent.
Additionally, he said DTR grew by 20.7 per cent in nominal terms while international trade tax revenue also recorded 39.6 per cent growth.
Dr Addae said a trend analysis of the DTR from 2018 to 2021 had shown that the Greater Accra Region, together with the Large Taxpayer Office and the Kinbu Tax Office, accounted for 89 per cent of the revenue while all the other regions contributed a paltry 11 per cent.
He said the figures showed that the Western and Ashanti regions only managed 1.42 per cent and 1.24 per cent of the DTR respectively while the other regions fell below the one percentage mark.
The GRA deputy Commissioner observed that it was particularly worrying that the Ashanti Region, which bustled with economic activities only managed about one per cent of the country’s DTR.
Touching on the way forward to enhance revenue performance, he said the GRA was trying to leverage on third party data to ensure tax compliance.
In that regard, Dr Addae said the authority was aligning its data with the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT), the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) as well as the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) to identify potential taxpayers.
Added to that, Dr Addae said the GRA was also optimizing DTR collection operation through digitalization.
“The digitization of the GRA operations will help to increase revenue collection efficiency, enhance compliance measures and strengthen tax administration,” he said.
He also said the linkage of the National Identification Card to the TIN had revealed that over 12 million national ID bearers did not have TIN, suggesting that they might not be fulfilling their tax obligations.