Friday 15 December 2017
(Ghana Web 09/19/17)
Government has decided to discontinue the requirement for exemption holders to provisionally pay the import duty and taxes upfront and apply for a refund later. In March this year during the presentation of the national budget, government announced the revocation of import duty and some taxes at the ports deemed nuisance. Importers were directed to pay upfront but made to come for refund later. Speaking to journalists in Accra, a Deputy Finance Minister Kwaku Kwarteng stated that importers will now benefit from exemptions from October 1, 2017 once they meet all the requirements. He maintained that the old system that required importers to pay upfront and later come for refund created some financial challenges for the business owners. “In our...
(Myjoyonline 09/19/17)
Even before we begin to look at what went wrong, let’s be very clear on the fact that the performance indicators are very technical which include tax calculations, FDI’s, GDP impact assessments and many more. For the ordinary Ghanaian, a poor performance only means fundamental lapses in various structures. Let’s take a look at some of the possible causes of this poor performance. Infrastructure - A surface look at this poor performance takes us to a big issue that is always attended to the government after government yet remains a very serious challenge. Infrastructure seems to be improving year on year with several high profile roads and facilities being constructed. Tourist information centres, digital centres, hotels and other hospitality services...
(Graphic Online 09/19/17)
For many years now, some goods sold and services rendered in the country are priced in United States dollars and not the local currency, the Ghana cedi. These ranges from the payment of school fees, sale of land, particularly in prime areas of the capital region, sale of houses (mortgages) and other immovable properties, hotel accommodation and its other services rendered, sale of vehicles (brand new ones) and in some cases events. Where one is unable to make payment in the foreign currency, the amount is quoted in the dollar and one is forced to pay at the prevailing exchange rate for the day. This phenomenon has been condemned by many but governments in the past and present have done...
(Myjoyonline 09/18/17)
Credit rating agency, Fitch Ratings, has affirmed Ghana at ‘B’ with a stable outlook, citing medium-term growth potential and improving macroeconomic stability. It noted that falling inflation will allow Bank of Ghana to continue lowering monetary policy rate and take other actions to loosen monetary policy. According to Fitch, Ghana’s non-oil domestic output is expected to continue to grow as power provision improves while banks continue to clear non-performing loans from their balance sheets. Key rating drivers It explained that the ratings reflect the country’s medium-term growth potential and improving macroeconomic stability, which is supported by the authorities’ commitment to putting public finances on a sustainable path. “This is balanced against high government debt, existing weakness in public finances, and...
(Ghana Web 09/18/17)
Credit rating agency, Fitch Ratings, has affirmed Ghana at ‘B’ with a stable outlook, citing medium-term growth potential and improving macroeconomic stability. It noted that falling inflation will allow Bank of Ghana to continue lowering monetary policy rate and take other actions to loosen monetary policy. According to Fitch, Ghana’s non-oil domestic output is expected to continue to grow as power provision improves while banks continue to clear non-performing loans from their balance sheets. Key rating drivers It explained that the ratings reflect the country’s medium-term growth potential and improving macroeconomic stability, which is supported by the authorities’ commitment to putting public finances on a sustainable path. “This is balanced against high government debt, existing weakness in public finances, and...
(Ghana Web 09/18/17)
Members of the Wholesalers, Importers and Shop Owners Union of Ghana (WISUG) have complained bitterly about the 3% VAT Flat rate, claiming that the new move has contributed to high cost of duties at the port. Government, in July this year, directed that the new Value Added Tax (VAT) 3% flat rate be implemented. This follows the amendment of the Value Added Tax Act, 2013 (Act 870) by parliament in April this year to reduce VAT from 17.5% to 3%. The move is in pursuance of the government’s policy to widen the tax net by roping in more taxpayers, especially retailers and wholesalers who hitherto did not meet the VAT’s current threshold of GH¢200,000. However, importers say the initiative is...
(Myjoyonline 09/18/17)
The mining sector in Ghana contributed significantly to the Ghanaian economy in 2016 fiscal year, the Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Chamber of Mines, Sulemanu Koney, has revealed. According to him, the sector, in 2016, contributed about GH¢1.6 billion to the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), representing 15.8 per cent of the GRA’s total direct taxes for the year. He told members of the Journalists for Business Advocacy at a forum in Accra that: “The sector contributed about GH¢ 1.6 billion to the GRA, representing 15.8 per cent GRA’s total direct taxes for the year. Mining was the leading tax payer and contributor to GRA’s domestic collections in 2016. It contributed about GHȻ 1.64 billion to GRA, representing 15.8% of...
(The Guardian 09/18/17)
Anna Jones says that, through selling its cocoa cheaply, Africa is exporting its wealth overseas; while Sue Banford claims that the soya moratorium in the Amazon has done nothing to halt deforestation. Only the final paragraph in your article on cocoa farming causing deforestation in Ivory Coast (Forests pay price for world’s taste for cocoa, 14 September) mentioned the most fundamental thing – the farmer’s livelihood, or lack of it. The low value of his (or more likely her) crop is undoubtedly the cause of this problem. But cocoa farming could also provide the solution. Recently, I was in Ivory Coast for the African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) in Abidjan. It united many different parties – governments, the UN’s Food...
(Ghana Web 09/15/17)
Governor of the Bank of Ghana (BoG), Dr. Ernest Addison, has called on banks to institute strong corporate governance structures in order to overcome challenges faced in the industry, adding that, a lack of it partly contributed to the sudden collapse of the UT and Capital banks. Speaking at a breakfast meeting at the National Banking College in Accra themed: “The Role of Capacity Building in Transforming the Practice of Corporate Governance in the Financial Sector”, Dr. Addison said the current economic environment exposes banks to a lot of risk, hence, the need to employ good corporate governance structures to mitigate them. “In our history, Ghana’s banking sector has also witnessed its fair share of corporate scandals and restructurings, including...
(Ghana Web 09/15/17)
Zenith Bank has allocated US$50million to support government’s development agenda with special attention paid to the development of railways within the One District, One Factory policy initiative. Managing Director of the bank, Henry Oroh, noted that the positive efforts by the Akufo-Addo administration towards achieving macroeconomic stability, will go a long way to reducing the cost of doing business in the country, allow for proper planning and make credit accessible to the private sector for accelerated growth. “The bank is working in collaboration with IFC and the World Bank to make available some $50 million dollars to support the rail sector The US$50 million-dollar facility would be used to support predominantly SME’s in the manufacturing sector within the railway industry.,”...
(Ghana Web 09/15/17)
The African Union Commission has commended the government of Ghana for implementing the Free Senior High School (SHS) policy, signifying that it is a sure way of ensuring the growth of the country and Africa as a whole. Deputy Chairperson, African Union Commission, Ambassador Thomas Kwesi Quartey, who gave the commendation while speaking at an UNCTAD-organised high-level panel discussion in Geneva, Switzerland, said, the beginning of Free SHS in Ghana will give greater impetus to the AU’s agenda of having every African child in school by the end of the decade. UNCTAD is the UN body responsible for development issues, particularly international trade as the main driver of development. “Africa has the largest number of young people, and this commission...
(Myjoyonline 09/15/17)
Investors all over the world lookout for avenues to put their funds in order to get some returns and the Ghana Stock Exchange is one of the possible options. In the article, “The performance of the GSE vs T-Bills”, published online, it was revealed that in the long term, the GSE returned marginally better than Treasury bills. Looking at the GSE from the foreign investors’ perspective takes a different twist. I was in a discussion with an investor who informed me he had invested about USD5Million in the Ghana Stock Exchange in the last eight years but has lost more than 50% of his investment even though the stock market is returning about 40% Year-To-Date this year 2017. I decided...
(APA 09/15/17)
The Ghanaian press focuses on public sector workers unions outrage over second tier pension scheme funds transfer delays on Friday. The Daily Graphic states "Public Sector Workers Angry" and that the Forum of Public Sector Registered Pension Scheme has given the government up to September 29 this year to transfer funds belonging to its members from the Temporary Pension Fund Account Fund (TPAF) lodged with the Bank of Ghana (BoG) to the designated schemes or face strike action. It said anything short of this would compel the group to embark on industrial action beginning from September 29. The Chairman of the forum, Mr. Isaac Bampoe Addo, told a news conference that the group was frustrated and disappointed at the manner...
(APA 09/15/17)
The Black Stars of Ghana are currently occupying 52nd position in the FIFA World ranking released for the month of September, APA learns here on Friday. The current position is the worst ever since Ghana entered the global ranking. After the 2006 World Cup tourney in Germany, Ghana was ranked 20th in the world, the best for the country. After slumming to the 50th position in August, Ghana has dipped further down, owing to poor performance of the Black Stars in the World Cup qualification series. The Stars drew their home matches twice, lost to Egypt and won away to Congo in the World Cup qualifiers. The Black Stars have 5 points and two more matches to play.
(Bloomberg 09/15/17)
Societe Generale SA, challenged on its home turf by Orange SA’s push into banking, is fighting back with a new mobile lender in Africa. The French lender started YUP, a new app for smartphones, in Senegal and Ivory Coast and plans to begin operating in four other sub-Saharan countries this year and next, the company said on Thursday. The bank aims to double its client base to 2 million in the region within three years. “Telcos have opened the way and they’ve gotten ahead,” Alexandre Maymat, who oversees Societe Generale’s operations in French-speaking Africa, said at a press briefing. “We’re catching up” by redefining the retail strategy and providing a broader offering than telephone companies. Chief Executive Officer Frederic Oudea...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/14/17)
LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Your afternoon chocolate bar may be fuelling climate change, destroying protected forests and threatening elephants, chimpanzees and hippos in West Africa, research suggests. Well-known brands, such as Mars and Nestle, are buying through global traders cocoa that is grown illegally in dwindling national parks and reserves in Ivory Coast and Ghana, environmental group Mighty Earth said. “Every consumer of chocolate is a part of either the problem or the solution,” Etelle Higonnet, campaign director at Mighty Earth, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation. “You can choose to buy ethical chocolate. Or you’re voting with your dollar for deforestation.” Nestle did not immediately respond to requests for comment while Mars said in an email: “We take a...
(Ghana Web 09/13/17)
About $150 million is lost to corruption at the Tema Port alone every year, Information Minister Mustapha Hamid has revealed, saying the newly-introduced paperless system of collecting revenue at the port is meant to stem the haemorrhaging. “Look, at the Tema Port alone, the experts tell us that every year we lose 150 million dollars at the Tema Harbour alone to corruption and underhand dealings. $150 million go into people’s private pockets so that is why we are introducing the paperless system of working at the port, once that works then you have blocked all the holes,” Mr Hamid told Class91.3FM’s Kwesi Parker-Wilson in an interview on Tuesday, 12 September on the sidelines of the official launch of the government’s...
(Ghana Web 09/13/17)
The government has indicated that it is still committed to reducing the cost of doing business in the country, by reviewing some taxes paid by firms. Managers of the economy have come under some criticisms over delays in removing all the taxes including reduction of corporate taxes, as announced in the New Patriotic Party (NPP) manifesto in the ahead of 2016 elections. But Deputy Finance Minister, Kweku Kwarteng, told Joy Business these reductions must be guided by current developments in the economy. He said, “we promised to cut tax in our manifesto; we have four years and we have promised that we will deliver on all those tax cuts. But we have to be quick to add that we should...
(APA 09/13/17)
President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana was in Abuja on Tuesday to celebrate the successful medical treatment his Nigerian counterpart, President Muhammadu Buhari, went through in London. Buhari returned to Nigeria in August after 103-day stay in London for medical attention. ``Ghanaians are happy over the return of President Buhari from a successful medical treatment in London on August 11,’’ Akufo-Addo said. Akufo-Addo told journalists after a closed door meeting with Buhari in the Presidential Villa, that leaders within and outside the African continent were anxious about Buhari’s health and prayed for his safe return to Nigeria. The Ghanaian President stated that he felicitated with Buhari on his return and also engaged him on other bilateral issues bothering on the relationship...
(This Day Live 09/13/17)
The President of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo, tuesday said President Muhammadu Buhari’s illness created a volume of anxiety within the rank and file of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). Akufo-Addo who made this remark while answering questions from State House correspondents in the Presidential Villa after visiting Buhari, said he was very glad to see the president in his vigorous and lively state. Ghana’s president who arrived at the State House at about 3:11 p.m. and was received by Buhari in company of his Chief of Staff, Malam Abba Kyari, and other State House officials, later went into a closed-door meeting with the president. Answering questions after the meeting, Akufo-Addo said he had opted to visit Buhari to...

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