The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has said its revised revenue target in the 2020 COVID-19 mid-year budget review has been achieved.
Data from the GRA show that as at Tuesday, November 24, 2020 the revenue collector exceeded the revised 2020 mid-year budget of GH¢42.7billion and is close to achieving the original or pre-pandemic target of GH¢47.2billion.
Speaking to the B&FT, Commissioner-Customs Division of GRA, Colonel Kojo Damoah (Rtd) said: “We have passed the revised target, because if you look at the monthly figure for the months that came after introducing the revised budget, we have always exceeded our target”.
A further analysis of the data shows that the GRA, in 2020, achieved its monthly target of more than GH¢1billion – with exceptions being the months of February, March and April, which saw the introduction of severe restrictions on movement of humans, goods and services to curb the rise of COVID-19 cases.
But after the lifting of restrictions and full implementation of the Integrated Customs Management System (ICUMS), a new revenue collection system, the GRA saw improvements in its revenue data.
Colonel Damoah (Rtd) explained that the authority has already passed the GH¢40billion mark, but it is in constant engagements with tax payers to pay on time so the data can reflect these revenues as 2020 revenues.
“If they wait till the following month, then it will reflect next year. We try to have discussions with them so they bring it up-front. With that strategy and the understanding and cooperation with our tax payers, we are hopeful we will be able to get our original target.”
He was very hopeful that despite the disruptions caused by COVID-19, the pre-pandemic target of GH¢47.2billion is achievable. His hopes are pinned on Customs raking in at least an extra GH¢1billion and domestic tax adding GH¢3 to GH¢4billion. “With December always seeing increased business activities, which result in more taxes to government, we are likely to get the GH¢47billion.”