New Year’s School calls on government to rescind property tariff directive

Attendees of 73rd The Annual New Year School and Conference (ANYSC) has called on the government to reverse its directive which tasked the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) with collecting land rates in the country.

Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta, presenting the 2022 budget and economic policy statement to Parliament last year, said the government would implement a new strategy to help the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) to effectively collect land rates.

“The Government through the GRA will from January 2022 assist the MMDAs to implement a Common Land Rate Administration Platform to improve land rate collection and accountability.

“To ensure cost recovery by the government in providing the infrastructure for the collection of the rate, a sharing ratio will be agreed with the assemblies,” he said.

However, participants at the ANYSC, organized by the University of Ghana (UG), are of the view that property rates should be an integral part of revenue mobilization efforts by MMDAs to meet development needs at the level local.

Dr Issahaka Fuseini from the Department of Adult Education and Human Resources Studies at UG, who read the conference communiqué at its closing ceremony on Wednesday, said the government should improve the collection of country data.

He explained that improving data collection would help in targeting policies, as it would save the country’s resources to be used in important sectors of the economy.

Dr Fuseini said the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and the Ghana Health Service, should identify emerging technologies by putting the focus on local content and innovation to help meet the challenges of COVID-19.

He added that the Ministry of Health should work with relevant stakeholders in the health sector to provide continuous professional development in digital literacy and skills to health workers to enable them to use these technologies effectively. emerging.

“Digital infrastructure must be provided and made accessible to address inequalities in education. The Ministry of Education could leverage the public-private partnership to improve the provision and efficiency of internet, data, computing devices and learning management system,” he said. .

Dr Fuseini said that to advance the country’s industrialization agenda, the government should revise its policy of reducing the reference value to exempt products that could be produced locally.

He said the conference believed that such a review would enhance the competitiveness of local manufacturers, as the government would involve the private sector more to provide warehouse infrastructure in rural areas to address post-harvest losses and improve the operations of the National Buffer Zone Stock Company.

Organized by the university’s School of Continuing and Distance Learning, the three-day ANYSC, which aimed to discuss relevant issues in the country, was themed “COVID-19 and socio-economic dynamics. economy in Ghana”.