Chartered Economist Mr. Emmanuel Amoah Darkwah has described the claim by Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta that the economy would collapse without E-Levy as troubling and without merit.
He said there could be more than what Ghanaians know, and the Minister must come clean with his assertion since the amount they have projected to get from the E-Levy is not an amount that could collapse the economy.
”The projected revenue from the E-Levy is 7 billion, and when you look at the budget statement the projected revenue is 100 billion as against the expenditure of 137 billion and right there you have about 37 billion budget deficit and so if you tell me without the E-Levy the economy would be in disaster, then there is something you know that we [Ghanaians] do not know.
The budget does not even back the claims of the Finance Minister. I believe that there would be no economic disaster. We should do the difficult work of cutting down expenditure and raise more revenue. It cannot be true that there would be a disaster without E-Levy.”
He further warned the proposed E-Levy could have a serious negative impact on the digital drive being pushed by the government.
He averred that the discussion surrounding the levy should not be about revenue mobilization but its impact on the digital economy and the economy in general.
To him, the proposed levy would be dire for the digital space.
He posited that we also have to look at the original intention of the government in raising revenue but the rate is too high.
He also warned the target of the government might not be possible, and at the same time, the impact on the digital space would be too much.
Mr. Amoah Darkwah said the government should have consulted widely because if you look at the cashless society we want to build, it is not just about the revenue but more importantly the impact of taxation on the digital economy”.