The African Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP) is calling for companies in the oil and gas industry to be slapped with additional taxes. According to the centre, Ghana is already losing so much because of inadequacies in the petroleum tax laws.
Executive Director and energy analyst at ACEP, Mohammed Amin Adam in making his submission at a stakeholder forum organized by the Finance Ministry on the 2014-2016 budgets noted that the oil companies were only paying corporate taxes.
He questioned why little was being made from an industry that has promising prospects.
“The fact that it does not make provisions for capital gains tax some transactions have taken place between oil companies, and Ghana has not been able to get its 10% capital gains tax. It is also silent on capitalization. Even though the internal revenue act provides for it, the industry specific law does not.”
He added that, “apart from the corporate tax, oil companies are not required to pay any other tax. And so they don’t pay export tax or duties even though a substantial amount of crude oil is taking place and more are going to be exported as production increases. This sector holds promise and that requires amendment to support the industry specific tax provisions, if we can amend the other tax laws to ensure that they are harmonized.”
Meanwhile, the energy think tank is also calling for an absolute ceasure of budget support to the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC).
Currently about 10 pesewas is charged for every litre of fuel bought to support the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) in exploration.
The centre says government’s continuous financing of the company through petroleum revenues accrued is a big burden on the nation’s purse.
Mr. Adam told Citi Business News, the GNPC is capable of raising its own funds and says it could list on the Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) or look for a strategic partner.
“GNPC obviously needs capitalization if they have to perform well in this business of oil and gas. To be a true commercial operator, they need to be able to raise their own capital to invest.”
“They may not go to the stock exchange now, but within the next five years, they should be able to use the money ceded to them by government. Government should then support them to get them off the national budget and then allow them fund themselves,” he added.
Source: GhanaWeb; Photo: http://neftegaz.ru