Ghana May Introduce New Mobile Taxes

July 5, 2013 Taxation in Ghana

Mobile PhonesACCRA – The cost of purchasing and using cellphones in Ghana could soon incrase, as the government looks at introducing several new taxes on the mobile industry.

The Parliament of Ghana is currently reviewing, and within days is expected to approve, new legislation to amend the Communications Service Tax Act in order to introduce a new 6 percent tax on inbound international phone calls, and a 20 percent duty on importing cellphone handsets.

The 6 percent call tax will be paid by the local network operator handling the connection, but industry experts believe that the entirety of the cost will be passed directly to the consumers.

The import tax is intended to protect the cellphone manufacturing industry in Ghana, and also aimed to encourage consumers to purchase handsets produced in the country.

So far, the main opposition to the proposed taxes comes from the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunication, which claims that the measures will have adverse effects both on consumers and mobile operators.

Explaining the potential negative impact of the tax, the chief executive officer of the Chamber Kwaku Sakyi-Addo said that the calling tax will reduce the profit margins of mobile operators, and will make the country an “…unattractive destination for telecom investments and ultimately, it will hurt subscribers and it will hurt government.”

Photo by yisris