On Thursday, May 20, 2021, the Ghana Revenue Authority launched an investigation into Oil Market Companies (OMCs) that have failed to meet their tax obligations to the state.
The GRA took possession of and locked up the assets of seven oil marketing companies that owe the state more than GHS100 million in taxes.
The taxes are consumer levies levied on petroleum products that must be remitted to the GRA within 21 days plus a four-day grace period after the products are sold.
According to the GRA, some OMCs have failed to make remittances since 2019.
Engaging the media as part of the tax enforcement exercise, Nathaniel Nii Okai Tetteh, Chief Revenue Officer with the GRA’s debt management and compliance enforcement unit, stated that while the GRA does not enjoy attaching and locking up the assets of businesses, it is compelled to do so to ensure the businesses are tax compliant.
“We attempted to work with some of these companies to find an amicable way to settle their debt. When that approach fails, the authority steps in to seize their assets and possibly auction them off within ten days,” Mr. Nathaniel Nii Okai Tetteh told the media.
Going forward, the Ghana Revenue Authority has stated that OMCs will be required to pay consumer taxes and levies on petroleum products purchased from bulk suppliers in advance.
According to the Authority, the move is intended to control the situation in which OMCs fail to remit consumer taxes charged on products sold at the pumps.
The Association of Oil Marketing Companies said it supported the GRA’s new directive.
According to the Association’s Board Chairman, Henry Akwaboah, the suggestion was made to the GRA as a more efficient method of retrieving taxes and levies.