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E-Levy Is A Lazy Way Of Sitting In The Air-condition To Raise Revenue – Pianim To Govt.

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Kwame Pianim, a renowned economist has said the introduction of the E-Levy in the 2022 Budget Statement is a lazy approach of mobilising revenue.

On Wednesday (17 November) the Minister for Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, announced the E-Levy, a 1.75% tax on mobile money and other electronic transactions, as a measure to “rope the informal sector into the tax net”.

However, speaking in an interview on Asaase Radio Thursday (16 December), Pianim said the policy is backward and anti-technology.

“First of all, I think it is a very backward step. The mobile money has brought financial inclusion to people in the villages who cannot go to the bank and open a bank account. You know what MTN and others are doing, they go to the bank and open an E-wallet for you, we don’t control it they do, they count it as if it is their money, it is not their money.

“A little bit more consultation would have shown government that don’t go there. You want to raise six billion? Is six billion worth undermining the digitalisation effort that this government has put in digitalising things?” the economist asked.

He added: “It is a lazy way of sitting in the air condition in Ministry of Finance and say ‘oh I want money, oh let me grab this.’ The Ministry of Finance is not a budget and expenditure ministry, it is for development, it is for finance. So you are looking at what will grow the economy not what will give you money…”

Pianim called on the government to rather cut down on its expenditure and find other innovative ways of raising revenue.


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