The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) Tuesday seized cartons of carbonated drinks and water from retail shops in Accra for failing to comply with the tax stamp policy.
The move according to the GRA is to ensure full compliance of the excise tax law.
The Head of Excise Unit at the GRA, Kwabena Ampaw told JoyBusiness that they will enhance enforcement in the markets moving forward and non-compliant retailers and wholesalers will be dealt with accordingly.
“We may have some products slip through our hands into the market without the stamps and there is the need to always be here for full compliance,” Mr Ampaw said.
Tuesday’s operation at the Central Business District is to boost sensitization of the excise tax law as well as ensuring that the necessary tax and duties are paid on products.
“The Ghana Revenue Authority has given ample time to these retailers and shop owners to affixed the stamps or face prosecution. We are giving them some little time to come explain to the Commissioner General why they couldn’t get the stamps on, then the necessary sanction will be followed.”
The Excise Tax Stamp Act, 2013 (ACT 873) was passed by Parliament in December 2013 with the aim of helping the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) enforce the affixing of Excise Tax Stamp on specific excisable goods before they are delivered ex-factory, cleared from any port or presented for sale at any commercial level in Ghana.
The ACT subsequently received presidential assent in January 2014.
The Excise Tax Stamp Act is definitely not an introduction of a new tax. It rather requires that Excise Tax Stamps with traceable and security-enhanced features on specified excisable commodities in order to serve as preliminary evidence of the payment of the required duties and taxes and to provide an audit trail for tracing importers and manufacturers of counterfeited goods.
Excisable Products expected to be affixed with the stamps include Cigarette and other Tobacco products, alcoholic beverages, non-alcoholic and carbonated beverages, bottled water, textiles and other goods determined by the Minister of Finance.
The enforcement of the Act started at the ports on January 1, 2018, and the points of sale on March 1, 2018, with a special task force commencing the first phase of an enforcement exercise in Accra, Kumasi and Takoradi.