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Gold Revenue Ghana loses $6bn through gold export - ACEP

The Africa Center for Energy Policy (ACEP) attributed the loss to the illegal trade in the small-scale mining sector, and the GRA inability to ensure proper taxation scheme in that sector.

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The Africa Center for Energy Policy (ACEP) has revealed that 6 billion dollars worth of gold sold to Dubai, India, and Switzerland between 2013 and 2016 was not recorded in the national data.

This is according to a survey conducted by ACEP.

ACEP attributed the loss to the illegal trade in the small-scale mining sector, and the Ghana Revenue Authority’s(GRA) inability to ensure proper taxation scheme in that sector.

The GRA signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Ghana National Association of Small Scale Miners in 2016, to introduce a 10 percent withholding tax for the small-scale sector which amounted to a GHC500 quarterly postage stamp system.

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However, this was later reduced to 3 percent, after the miners complained that the 10 percent was too high.

However, gold buyers still refuse to issue tax certificates after transactions.

The survey revealed that 95% of the small scale-miners ACEP interacted with never received tax certificate for the 3% withholdings payments to the gold buyers.

Executive Director for ACEP, Benjamin Boakye said the GRA is causing the country to lose billions of cedis.

“Once it is a withholding tax, you have to issue a tax certificate from GRA to show that you have actually paid the tax to the government. But that is not done, and there is no proper monitoring of the sector when it comes to the payment of taxes.”

The survey further disclosed that some gold buyers and exporters have links or relationships with importers and foreign traders of general goods.

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This relationship helps merchandise dealers to use their revenue from the sale of goods (Cedis) to finance licensed gold purchases for export in exchange for Dollars abroad to ship goods to Ghana.

This practice helps them to avoid compliance with regulations to repatriate cash proceeds from their trade.

The Africa Center for Energy Policy is, therefore, proposing a flat tax scheme for the small-scale mining sector, as a way of increasing revenue generation from that sector which contributes 34 percent of total gold output in the country.

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