The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has uncovered various VAT infractions at 12 businesses during an enforcement exercise in Accra.
The inspection was carried out at Lapaz, Abeka, Kwabenya and Pokuase ACP Junction, all in Accra, and unveilled various tax violations such as failure to register for VAT and non-issuance of VAT documentation.
Specifically, New Horizon Coldstore in Kwabenya selectively issued VAT; Glorious Shoppers Delight at Pokuase ACP Junction was found to be unregistered for VAT; Kriskay Kiddies at ACP Junction did not register for VAT; Uncle Sas Autoparts at Pokuase ACP Junction, despite being registered, did not issue VAT documentation; while Sunset Glow, a ladies’ lingerie shop, failed to register for VAT.
The team also uncovered that T6 Enterprise at Pokuase ACP Junction did not have VAT documentation, and OPFA Mart Enterprise at Pokuase ACP Junction was not registered for VAT.
Additionally, Big Apple Gym/Astroturf at Pokuase ACP Junction was operating without VAT registration; Rhema Batteries at Lapaz did not issue VAT documentation; Andy Foods Ventures at Lapaz did not issue VAT documentation; Don-Elija Boutique at Abeka was not registered for VAT; and Korland Motors at Abeka was also not registered for VAT.
Assistant Commissioner Joseph Annan, Head-Accra Central Enforcement Unit, GRA, stated during the enforcement operation that these activities will persist until complete compliance is attained.
“This time, our focus extends beyond VAT; we are now committed to ensuring complete tax compliance. Taxation encompasses more than just VAT, so our scrutiny will encompass all applicable taxes for any given taxpayer we visit. We are not limiting our search solely to VAT,” he said.
This approach, Mr. Annan added, will entail “a comprehensive examination of the taxpayers we encounter in each area to identify their eligibility for various tax categories…this is how we intend to enhance our tax collection efforts. It’s not solely about VAT compliance; it’s about adhering to all tax categories”.
Section 41 of the VAT Act mandates that businesses must consistently provide VAT invoices, and any failure to comply with this requirement constitutes a violation of the law.
The Bank of Ghana reported in its May 2023 Monetary Sector Report an increase in domestic VAT collection of 92.4 percent year-on-year – from GH¢649million to GH¢1.2billion in the first quarter this year.
The GRA has set a revenue target of GH¢106billion, of which the Customs Division is expected to collect some GH¢28.5billion in 2023.
Also, it has listed some 93 businesses across the capital as targets for enforcement and compliance this year.