18th May 2024

Government has announced various incentives for private-sector industries to cushion them against the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, and also to stimulate economic growth in 2021 and beyond.

In light of this, the government is providing a tax rebate of 30 per cent on the income tax due for companies in hotels and restaurants, education, arts & entertainment, and travel and tours for the second, third and fourth quarters of 2021.

In addition, the government has announced the suspension of quarterly income tax instalment payments for the second, third and fourth quarters of 2021 for small businesses using the income tax stamp system.

These were contained in the 2021 Budget Statement and Economic Policy delivered to Parliament by Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, the Majority Leader and Minister of Parliamentary Affairs last Friday.  The theme for the 2021 Budget is “Completion, Consolidation and Continuation”.

As part of measures to reduce the cost of transportation, the Budget further announced the suspension of quarterly instalment payments of the vehicle income tax for the third and fourth quarters of 2021 for ‘tro-tros’ and taxis.

Besides, the Minister said the government is extending “the waiver of interest as incentive for early payment of accumulated tax arrears: A waiver of penalty and interest on accumulated tax arrears up to December 2020 to reduce cash flow challenges for companies and individuals who arrange terms with GRA to pay up the principal by September 2021.”

“Beneficiaries of these reliefs will have to be registered with the Ghana Revenue Authority, and must have fulfilled their first quarter tax obligations,” he added.

Recovery drive

Announcing additional priority programmes to drive Ghana’s recovery drive, Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu stated plans to scale-up the vaccination of Ghanaians to enable the country to attain herd immunity by the end of 2021.

He added that the government would continue the implementation of ‘Agenda 111’ to provide hospitals and related infrastructure nationwide to improve the delivery of healthcare.

“Agenda 111 will see to the construction of 100-bed District Hospitals in one hundred and one (101) Districts with no hospitals, seven (7) Regional Hospitals for the new Regions, including one for the Western Region, the construction of two (2) new psychiatric hospitals for the Middle Belt and Northern Belt, respectively, and the rehabilitation of Effia-Nkwanta Hospital in the Western Region,” he explained.

He said the government would also intensify efforts to improve public sanitation, provide support to those who have lost their jobs due to Covid-19 to find other gainful employment opportunities and deploy resources for the security agencies to maintain peace and security.

The Minister gave the assurance that efforts would be made to “complete many of our ongoing infrastructure projects within our resource envelope, reflecting the theme of the budget…”, and “continue the implementation of our flagship programmes, including the Planting for Food and Jobs, the Free Senior High School and the One District, One Factory agenda.”

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