- GTA projects GH¢15.9m profit in 2022
The Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) has collected revenue of GH¢15.1million, being the amount accrued from payments of the 1 percent tourism levy into the Tourism Development Fund (TDF) during the 2021 operational year, the Fund’s Administrator, Prince Yaw Essah, has revealed.
Mr. Essah was speaking to the B&FT on performance of the Fund, and pegged the recent national compliance level of paying the levy at 70 percent.
The GTA indicated that despite the pandemic’s impact on tourism businesses, the TDF is projecting to collect a revenue of GH¢15.9million in the 2022 operational year as things are gradually picking up.
But for impacts of the virus on the hotel and hospitality industry in Ghana, where there was a dip in revenue collected for 2020, the Fund’s performance would have been on the upward trajectory in the last five years since 2017.
Data from the TDF Secretariat of the GTA show that payment of the levy accumulated an amount of GH¢11million in 2017, GH¢16million in 2018, GH¢18million in 2019 – but experienced a major dip in revenue to GH¢10.5million in 2020 against a projected target of GH¢20million that year.
To whip up enthusiasm for paying the levy, the GTA has been educating and creating awareness within the hospitality industry on the need for operators to honour tax obligations to the Fund.
However, there have been notable incidences of non-compliance among some operators who are eligible to pay the levy – a situation that has led to some of those facilities’ closure.
Mr. Essah mentioned the Western and the Ashanti Regions as major destinations where compliance level is very low, with most of the enterprises in those regions defaulting in payment and compliance levels in the Greater Region always ahead of others.
“Hotels in the Ashanti and Western Regions are booked almost every day due to their economic activities. Surprisingly, evasion is very high in those regions,” he said.
He reiterated that the TDF, under the auspices of the GTA, will continue to embark on debt recovery exercises to clamp down and retrieve the levy from defaulting enterprises – some of which are in arears for three years.
The 1 percent monthly tourism levy, which is guaranteed under Legislative Instruments (LI) 2238 and 2239 and mandated by the Tourism Act, 2011, Act 817, is charged on bills as one patronises hospitality-related enterprises such as hotels, clubs, guest-houses, lodges and hostels.
The TDF’s aim is to provide funding for tourism and tourism-related projects and programmes. The Fund is used to sponsor activities including marketing and promotion; capacity building, market research and the development of tourism infrastructure; development and promotion of other entrepreneurial activities within the sector; tourism export activities; and education and training.
The TDF does not replace state funding for tourism but substantially supplements it.