Managing Partner at Ali Nakyea and Associates, Dr. Ali Nakyea says businesses that have been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic could apply to the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) for tax extensions or deferment.
This he believes will ensure continuous business operations while meeting tax obligations amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
On the third day of the on-air series of the Citi Business Festival on Wednesday, Dr. Nakyea who spoke on the topic, ‘Compliance in Abnormal Times’ urged businesses to take advantage of the provision to keep them in operation.
“COVID-19 is not over so we may want to appeal to the GRA and the government for that matter to look at an extension if things are not right. So if you are unable to meet the deadline, the best way of compliance is to apply to the GRA for an extension of time to file. I will go for an argument of deferment rather than a waiver. If you look at the waiver, it is under the constitution and you will find that it is only Parliament that waives or exempt a person from tax. So in this breadth, if you want to go in that direction, it some application that must go through. But deferment is trying to postpone the payment time so that you will be able to arrange your finances and be able to meet. They (GRA) do it a lot to help businesses even in normal times, how much more in abnormal times. So they are always ready to assist.”
He however asked the businesses to appeal to the government to waive the interest payment that comes with the deferment of taxes.
“What will go with deferment is for the application of the waiver of the interest and penalties. An extension can be granted but the law says it does not extend for you, the time of payment and this is one area government can look at to ease the pressure on businesses that the extension of time should include the late payment. Deferment of payment can be done but it does not absolve you of the liability to have paid on the due date as established by law. So the business community can look at it and appeal to the government to waive the interest.”
The 2020 edition of the Citi Business Festival started on Monday, June 1, 2020, with a line-up of radio and TV programs. It will feature virtual business forums and will be live on Citi TV.
The month-long festival of business events and on-air activities provides inspiration, business ideas, and information for persons who are starting, building or growing their businesses.
This year’s edition of the Citi Business Festival is sponsored by Absa Bank, GIPC, Citi 97.3FM and powered by the most comprehensive business news website; citibusinessnews.com.