The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) which is under the Ministry of Finance is responsible for the collection, protection and accounting for tax revenue on goods and services.
Over the years, considerable revenue has been lost through illicit trade. Illegal operators within Ghana smuggle tobacco, spirits and other alcoholic beverages into the country as well as indulge in the sale of counterfeited products. What is more, the under declaration of quantities of these goods, both imported and locally produced, has led to significant loss of revenue. Goods in transit, particularly cigarettes which are often diverted or smuggled back into the country and sold on the market are difficult to detect.
These illegal activities cause significant revenue loss to Government and also put legitimate brand owners and businesses at a competitive disadvantage.
Further, the counterfeited products are extremely dangerous to consumers as these goods are typically of much lower quality and may contain poisonous constituents which adversely affect the health of consumers.
These developments have necessitated various measures for improving current inspection, verification and monitoring procedures towards increasing revenue as well as address the other issues raised.
The use of digital tax stamps on selected excisable products (i.e. cigarettes and alcoholic beverages), has been identified as an effective means of addressing these challenges.