The 2013 Budget Statement

By Ghanaian Chronicle
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By Ghanaian Chronicle

3/11/2013 6:15:05 PM -

STRUCTURAL REFORMS OF THE MEDIUM TERM AGENDA
Sustainability of Government's Wage Bill
84. Mr. Speaker, as indicated earlier, the huge wage bill has crowded out

the fiscal space for spending on critical social intervention and other

infrastructural programmes. Going forward, the following measures

will be taken to ensure the sustainability of the SSPP and reverse the

worrying trend of the public sector wage bill:
ï‚· Consistent with the White Paper on the SSPP, the SSPP is to be

implemented within a five-year period, therefore, aspects of the

pay policy with huge fiscal implications will be spread over the

five-year period rather than rush their implementation;

ï‚· Government will ensure that the SSPP, which is an all-embracing

Government policy, will apply to all Ministries, Departments and

Agencies that are fully or partially on Government budget except

those which are exempted by the Constitution or an Act of

Parliament. In addition, Government will speed up the migration

of subvented agencies onto the mechanized payroll system as

part of measures to ensure efficient control and management of

the payroll.
ï‚· The FWSC, the MOF, Public Sector Reform Secretariat, the

Public Services Commission, the Office of the Head of Civil

Service and other relevant agencies will carry out
complementary public sector reforms to ensure that pay is

linked to productivity in the public service. Public service

workers are expected to match the increased pay that has

resulted from the implementation of the SSSS with improved

productivity to ensure the sustainability of the pay policy;

ï‚· The wage adjustments in the public service and the current

exercise on the rationalization and standardization of categories

2 and 3 allowances will be undertaken within budgetary

constraints in the implementation period;
ï‚· Government has decided that emphasis will be laid on

determining the National Minimum Daily Wage and negotiating

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the public service wage before the annual budget is submitted

to Parliament for approval;
ï‚· Government will, as a matter of urgency, ensure that market

premium guidelines are issued to provide more clarity on the

determination of market premium and prevent its abuse; and

ï‚· The payroll upgrade, auditing, and biometric registration

exercises will be mainstreamed into the Government payroll and

human resource management system and there will be strict

enforcement of existing wage management regulations on

government officials who renege on their responsibilities,

thereby, promoting payroll fraud.
External Sector
http://ghanaian-chronicle.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/mps.jpg 85. In the medium term, the thrust of external sector policy will focus on

the accumulation of external reserves to provide support for exchange

rate stability during external shocks. The reserve build up will be

largely supported by favourable world market prices of the major

export commodities and anticipated foreign inflows from portfolio and

foreign direct investments.
Price and Money
86. The objective of monetary policy will be maintained on price stability

which provides an enabling environment for economic growth. In the

medium term, monetary policy stance will focus on risks in the outlook

that may confront the economy from both domestic and external

sources, and at the same time remain complementary to government's

fiscal consolidation efforts in the years ahead. The Bank of Ghana will

continue to enforce prudential regulations to ensure soundness and

stability of the financial system to enhance financial intermediation

efforts in the economy.
Outlook for Debt Management in 2013
87. Mr. Speaker, the end December 2012 debt simulation exercise showed

vulnerability to the exchange rate in a stress test with the debt to GDP

ratio approaching its threshold by the end of 2018. The main

vulnerabilities are related to a high debt service-to-revenue ratio

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which may pose a risk to the fiscal outlook. While overall public sector

debt is projected to marginally increase in relation to GDP in the

medium term, the ratio of 49.5 per cent at end December 2012 does

not provide strong buffers against shocks. Government in this regard

will embark on a gradual fiscal consolidation and additional revenue

mobilization measures, supported by a stable economic growth.

Loan Financing and Infrastructure Projects
88. Mr. Speaker, Government is on course with the implementation of key

infrastructure projects under various loan financing arrangements

committed in 2011 and 2012. Works are far advance on the Western

Corridor Gas Infrastructure Project under CDB of China, the Bui Hydro

Dam Project by EXIM China is expected to be completed this year, the

water projects by EXIM Turkey and Korea are to commence this year,

as well as the Tamale Project, the Flyover Project and some portion of

the Eastern Corridor Road Project supported by the Brazilian PROEX

facility. MoF is working diligently with the beneficiary MDAs to finalize

relevant project preparation document to ensure the timely

preparation of these and other projects in the pipeline. The completion

of these projects will significantly reduce the infrastructural deficit in

critical areas of the economy.
Petroleum Hedging Programme
89. Government plans to continue the petroleum hedging programme in

2013 with plans to hedge about 2 million barrels of crude oil per

month, aimed at stabling crude oil prices. To this end, MOF will

embark on an education campaign with the aim of managing public

expectations about the programme and underline the fact that the

programme is first and foremost a price protection strategy, rather

than a profit-making venture.
Resource Mobilisation Initiatives
Tax Revenue
90. Mr. Speaker, Domestic Tax Effort as measured by the Tax/GDP (nonoil)

ratio improved from 15.1 percent in 2011 to 16.0 percent in 2012.

However, the Tax/GDP ratio including oil (excluding exemptions)

increased from 15.4 percent in 2011 to 16.3 percent in 2012. The

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following reasons accounted for the performance of Tax revenue in

2012:
ï‚· higher than anticipated payments for corporate tax from some

mining companies on account of high gold prices;
ï‚· higher than anticipated payments for mineral royalties on

account of high gold prices;
ï‚· efficiency gain from the ongoing revenue administration reform;

and
ï‚· shift from specific to ad valorem basis in excise taxation.

91. Mr. Speaker, while recognizing the strong revenue performance in

2012, the country needs to sustain revenue mobilization efforts in

view of the huge funding requirements needed to close the country's

infrastructure gap and domestic payment of arrears. The focus on

revenue generation in the 2013 fiscal year therefore, is to expand the

tax base and improve the efficiency of tax administration.

Tax Bills
92. Mr. Speaker, the Customs, Excise and Preventive Service, the Internal

Revenue Service and the VAT Service were organized into one

business unit, the Ghana Revenue Authority. The GRA reform was

established in 2010 and the reforms have brought Customs, Internal

Revenue Service and the VAT Service under one Commissioner

General. The specific functions of Customs and Domestic tax divisions

are being headed by various Commissioners. The reforms will

ultimately lead to efficiency gain and remove duplication of functions.

However, the various Commissioners will have to maintain flexibility in

carrying out their function under the overall control of the

Commissioner General. The Ministry of Finance will assist to smoothen

out this reorganization so that the intended synergy in operations will

be achieved with positive results.
93. Mr. Speaker, there is the need to consolidate and harmonize all the

various tax laws. During the year, the following laws will be tabled

before Parliament.
ï‚· The Revenue Administration Bill;
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ï‚· The Value Added Tax Bill;
ï‚· The Income Tax Bill;
ï‚· The Customs Bill; and
ï‚· The Excise Bill.
94. Mr. Speaker, the following are the tax proposals for 2013.

Domestic Taxes
Personal Income Tax Bands
95. Mr. Speaker, in line with our social democratic principles, personal

income taxation will continue to be used as a measure for equitable

distribution of income and also for protecting low income earners.

Taking cognizance of the current inflation trends in the country, the

impact of real increases in GDP on personal incomes, and to

compensate for the loss in purchasing power of income earners, the

income tax thresholds and brackets are being revised as follows:

Table 1: Tax Bands
Revision of Personal Reliefs
96. Mr. Speaker, personal reliefs are a means of reducing the burden on

tax payers in certain categories. It is noted that not many tax payers

take advantage of personal reliefs which are granted when tax returns

are filed. I would wish to encourage tax payers to file their annual

returns to take advantage of reliefs since subsidies are not the right

way for compensating low income earners. The following personal

reliefs are proposed:
Income Band
(GH¢)
Rate
(%)
First 1,584 Free
Next 792 5
Next 1,104 10
Next 28,200 17.5
Exceeding 31,680 25
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Table 2: Personal Reliefs
Item 2011 Rate 2013 Rate
Marriage/Dependent
Responsibility
100 currency points 200 currency points
Old Age 100 currency points 200 currency points
Child Education 100 currency points up
to 3 Children
200 currency points up to
3 Children
Aged Dependent 50 currency points 100 currency points

Training Cost 200 currency points 400 currency points

97. Mr. Speaker, the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) is to set up a

dedicated office to assist tax payers in filing their tax returns.

Additionally, the GRA will simplify the present tax returns form which

will make it a lot more convenient for tax payers who have no other

income apart from their salaries to file returns.
98. Mr. Speaker, in order to set the pace, all staff of the GRA must file

their 2012 tax returns and assist other public and civil servants to do

the same.
Vehicle Income Tax
99. Mr. Speaker, in the last revision of vehicle income tax, existing

quarterly rates were increased for vehicles of all categories except

trotros and taxis. It is only fair that we adjust these rates that have

not changed since 2005. For example an owner of a 33-seater

commercial vehicle is paying only GH¢15 per quarter (GH¢ 5 per

month) as compared to rates paid by public servants and other

workers in the formal sector. It is to be noted that the incidence of

this tax is not on the drivers of these vehicles but on the owners.

There is an alternative for the owners to opt to file their tax returns if

they believe this presumptive tax is too high. Owners who will opt to

file their tax returns will take advantage of the additional deductions

allowed for business (e.g. capital allowances and personal reliefs).

Environmental Taxes
100. Mr. Speaker, the growing concern about climate change in many

advanced and developing countries have brought environmental issues

to the forefront of the policy agenda in most of the advanced and

developing countries of which Ghana should not be left out. The

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argument has always been pointing at the need to introduce a more

comprehensive environmental tax system. Ghana is currently facing

several environmental challenges and in the area of environmental

sanitation, solid waste management presents a challenge to many

District Administrations across the country.
101. Mr. Speaker, the annual rate of generation of solid waste is high and

over the past decade this has increased from about 7,000 metric

tons/day in 1996 to about 13,800 metric tons/day in 2011 (Ministry of

Local Government and Rural Development, 2012). The waste problem

is most deplorable in urban communities, which struggle with everincreasing

populations due to rural-urban migration.
102. Mr. Speaker, one of the major constraints militating against waste

collection and disposal is lack of funding. Currently, the main sources

of funding for environmental sanitation services are from the national

budgetary allocation and donor support while the Municipal and

District Assemblies are expected to use significant portions of their

locally generated revenue to handle their waste collection and

disposal. These sources of funding have been inadequate and in the

case of donor support, unsustainable. Other competing demands in

the national budget tend to make funding for environmental sanitation

a low priority.
103. Mr. Speaker, in view of this an Environmental Fiscal Reform working

group has been formed to look at the various fiscal instruments

around the world that can be used to raise revenue for addressing

environmental problems in Ghana. The group will also look at how the

funds raised can be appropriately applied to addressing the

environmental concerns in waste management, transport and mining

sectors to mention a few. The group will present some proposals in

the 2014 budget.
Environmental tax on Plastic
104. Mr. Speaker, Environmental taxes have been introduced on plastics at

a rate of 15 percent with exemptions for pharmaceuticals and

agricultural sectors. Also, plastic for water sachets were exempted. Mr.

Speaker, it is time as a nation for us to find a solution to the

environmental hazards of water sachets. In this respect, the Ministry

of Finance (MoF) and the GRA will later in the year submit proposals

for the review of the tax regime.
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Penalty on over-aged vehicles
105. Mr. Speaker, previously cars beyond a certain age were completely

banned in the country. However, it was later decided to impose

penalties instead of the outright ban on old aged cars. Considering the

environmental implications of over age cars and the risk associated

with its usage on our roads, the MoF and the GRA will conduct a

comprehensive review of the tax regime on overaged cars and submit

proposals to Parliament in the course of the year.
Tax Amnesty
106. Mr. Speaker, in the 2012 Budget we offered a tax amnesty to all

companies and individuals who have defaulted in the payment of their

taxes. This amnesty is still in effect. It appears from returns so far

received that the response from the real estate sector is not

encouraging. I wish to call on real estate owners who receive rental

charges to take advantage of the ongoing exercise on tax amnesty

and get registered.
107. Mr. Speaker, businesses in the oil and gas sector who supply final

products and do not report their incomes for taxation are also being

advised to take advantage of the tax amnesty and register for tax

purposes. The GRA will embark on a rigorous exercise after the grace

period ends to bring all defaulters to book.
Airport Tax
108. Mr. Speaker, the Kotoka International Airport is not only serving as a

hub for the West Africa region but, in addition, the number of

passengers and airlines are increasing putting the facilities in use at

the airport under pressure. It is the intention of the government to

upgrade the facilities to higher standards.
109. Mr. Speaker, currently, revenue raised from the Airport tax is shared

between the GRA and the Ghana Airport Company. I am proposing

that the Ghana Airport Company be allowed to retain all Airport tax

collections so that the entire revenue raised can be used to develop

both the international and local airports. The Ministry of Finance and

the Ministry of Transport will in due course present a sustainable plan

for infrastructure development and expansion of all airports in Ghana.

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Communication Service Tax (CST)
110. Mr. Speaker, when the CST was introduced in 2008, it was fixed at an

ad valorem rate of 6 percent on a minute call charge. In addition, an

interconnectivity charge was added to raise revenue for services

rendered by mobile operators to each other when they are dealing

with calls from customers. The 6 percent was arrived at in order to

remove the cascading nature of the interconnectivity charge.

However, Communication Service Companies have raised an issue of

double taxation in the interconnectivity charge.
111. Mr. Speaker, in consultation with the industry a bill will be presented

to Parliament later this year to take care of these issues which will not

lead to any revenue loss to the State. However, the communication

companies are being urged to pay all accrued arrears.

Customs Assurance/Destination Inspection
112. Mr. Speaker, for more than fifty years, all imports into the country

have been under pre-shipment destination inspection. This system has

not resolved the issue of corruption at the ports. This system cannot

be allowed to continue forever. Therefore, after the existing contracts

expire, the Customs Division of the GRA will assume the full

responsibility for valuation, quality and quantity of imports, in line with

the new thinking of the World Trade Organization (WTO). The GRA

will develop a module that will enhance the existing risk management

module and assist in carrying out this assignment. Currently, the GRA

has eight commodities under their valuation assurance program.

During the course of the year, the coverage will be increased to cover

all the high value commodities.
Tax Technical Assistance
113. Mr. Speaker, Ghana was subjected to a Phase one Peer Review by the

Global Forum of the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and

Development (OECD) in October 2010 and the associated report

published in May 2011. Ghana subsequently joined the Global Forum

in May 2011. The report made seven recommendations which must be

implemented before Ghana undergoes the Phase II Review in the

second half of 2013. To implement the Phase 1 recommendations,

some amendments to the legal and regulatory framework are

required. The amendments relate to the Anti-Money Laundering Act

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2008, (Act 794), the Companies Code 1963, (Act 179) and the Internal

Revenue Act, 2000 (Act 592). Government will in the next few weeks

introduce the relevant Bills to effect these amendments.

114. Mr. Speaker the phase one review also recommended that Ghana

increases its Tax Information Exchange Agreements (TIEA). These

TIEAs allow jurisdictions to exchange information among themselves

for tax and other purposes. This tool is used by tax authorities around

the world to mitigate tax risk and tax evasion across borders. In 2013,

Ghana will initiate steps to enter into more TIEAs with our relevant

trade and investment partners.
115. Mr. Speaker our relationship with some Development Partners led to

the promulgation of a Transfer Pricing Regulation in 2012. Even

though Act 592 made provision for transfer pricing abuses, it could not

be implemented because of lack of a transfer pricing regulations.

Staffs of GRA and other stakeholders like the Judiciary, the Police and

the business community have been trained with the support of the

Development Partners. In 2013, a special unit will be set up to

conduct special audit to detect transfer pricing abuses. It is believed

that these special audits will lead to a reduction in transfer pricing

abuses and, ultimately, result in bigger profits declaration for tax

purposes.
Increase in Value Added Tax threshold
116. Mr. Speaker, Government will continue to improve efficiency in tax

administration. The VAT registration threshold which is currently GH₵

90,000 will be increased to GH₵120,000 in fiscal year 2013. This

proposal which was announced in the 2012 Budget Statement was not

implemented for technical reasons. Businesses with turnover of less

than GH₵ 120,000 over a twelve month period will pay a presumptive

tax of 6 percent of turnover. Other businesses that do not deal in

goods on which VAT can be applied will pay a flat rate of 3 percent.

These taxpayers will fall within the category of small taxpayers and

the GRA will put in place the necessary measures to operationalize the

small tax payer offices that are being set up as part of the tax

administration segmentation programme. This will be in line with an

enhancement of the presumptive tax system. The increase in VAT

threshold does not constitute an increase in VAT rate.

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Tax Exemptions
117. Mr. Speaker, it is estimated that tax expenditure is about 3.28 percent

of GDP. Compared to the actual tax revenue/GDP ratio of 17.1

percent, it can be concluded that this is on the high side. In the past,

attempts to reduce exemptions have been marginally successful. We

intend to introduce new control measures to be incorporated in the

new Bills to be tabled before this House later this year to reduce the

overall impact of tax exemptions. A recent OECD study showed that

direct tax accounted for most of the exemptions, followed by VAT and

customs exemptions. Prior to this study most of the control measures

that were put in place affected mainly customs exemptions. Once we

are aware of the entire impact we will go ahead and review the overall

tax exemptions regime will be reviewed in order to drastically reduce

the granting of tax exemptions.
118. Mr. Speaker, against this backdrop MOF and GRA will undertake a

comprehensive review of the following:
ï‚· tax Incentive for agro-processing business;
ï‚· tax incentive for location of businesses;
ï‚· withholding tax rate on management and technical fees; and

ï‚· VAT on imported services.
119. Mr. Speaker, in order to reduce the abuses of tax incentives, a special

monitoring team will be formed in the Ministry of Finance and the GRA

to monitor the administration and use of tax incentives granted to

NGO's, charitable organizations and all other institutions under the

various incentive regimes. The team will also conduct periodic costbenefit

analysis of the various tax incentives currently in place.

120. Mr. Speaker, over the past years, government has given tax incentives

to some professionals in the public institution under a special vehicle

waiver scheme. In order to create a level playing field for all

professionals in the country and also to prevent a situation of

extending the incentive to all professionals (which will eventually

erode the tax base), the GRA and the TPU will conduct a

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comprehensive review of the special vehicle waiver scheme and later

present some proposals to Parliament in the course of the year.

Corporate Tax
121. Mr. Speaker, over the years corporate tax rates have been reduced to

a level of 25 percent for most of the corporate entities in the country

except the natural resources sector which has a rate of 35 percent.

For tax certainty, we do not intend to vary these rates. However,

recent observations are giving cause for alarm. Transfer pricing

abuses, inflated cost, and unallowable expenses are reducing the

amount of profits for taxation. The GRA will conduct in depth audit to

stem these abuses.
Tax Refunds
122. Mr. Speaker, delayed payment has been a common feature of our VAT

refund and duty drawback system. The Ministry of Finance and

Economic Planning will ensure that there are enough resources

available for refunds and duty drawbacks. Initially, two percent of

GRA's collection will be dedicated to this Fund. At the end of each

financial year, any excess amount standing in the refund account will

be transferred into the Consolidated Fund. Ultimately, the GRA in its

administrative improvement, will adopt an accounting system that will

allow taxpayers to offset such refunds against other tax liabilities.

Capital Allowances
123. Mr. Speaker, the maximum cost base of road vehicle other than

commercial vehicle is currently pegged at GH₵25,000 for capital

allowance purposes. The amount was last reviewed in 2004 from

GH₵15,000 per Act 669. It is proposed that a new amount not

exceeding GH₵70,000 will apply in 2013 due to the rising cost of

vehicles. This will be restricted to brand new vehicles with capacity not

exceeding 1.8 cc acquired by a business.
Windfall Profit Tax
124. Mr. Speaker, in 2012 the windfall profit tax Bill was tabled in

Parliament. The Bill sought to impose a Windfall Profit tax of 10

percent on mining companies. Unfortunately, the Bill could not be

considered by Parliament. A committee is reviewing all stability

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agreements and incentives in the mining sector, and civil society

interest groups have also submitted recommendations on how to

adequately tax the mining industry. In the coming weeks, Government

will seek to re-introduce the Bill in Parliament after due consultation

with all stakeholders.
Withholding Tax on Rents
125. Mr. Speaker, in 2002 a final withholding tax was imposed on the rents

received as investment income at a rate of 10 percent. This was

further reduced to 8 percent in 2006. Though we still have a deficit in

residential accommodation, more landlords are converting residential

accommodation into commercial ones. The GRA will improve the

administration of rent tax, including withholding elements, in

conjunction with the street/premises numbering programme as well as

property taxation by the MMDAs, particularly, with the Ministry of

Local Government and Rural Development.
Policy Initiatives
126. Mr. Speaker, in 2013 the following policy initiatives will be undertaken:

Development of a Fiscal Risk Management Plan
127. Mr. Speaker, developments over the years has exposed the need to

carefully identify and manage all sources of fiscal risk to the budget.

Governments have, over the years, endeavoured to ensure

macroeconomic stability through the implementation of prudent fiscal

and monetary policy measures. However, there remains a huge

challenge in bringing unplanned and unanticipated expenditures under

control.
128. These expenditures include contingent liabilities from State

Enterprises, subnational governments and unexpected legal claims. In

the absence of an institutional framework, and effective management

system, government's ability for effective fiscal management is

reduced thereby, undermining the credibility of the budget.

129. Mr. Speaker, in recognition of this, the Ministry of Finance in the

coming year, will develop and implement a Fiscal Risk Management

Strategy (FRiMs). The strategy will identify all sources of fiscal risk,

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categorize them, undertake a comprehensive analysis of the risk and

put in place a plan to manage them, ensuring that they are minimized

as much as possible.
130. An institutional framework and monitoring systems and other risk

mitigation measures will be developed to manage all contingent

liabilities.
131. It is expected that over the medium term, this initiative will lead to an

improved and sustained government fiscal outcomes.
Water for Schools
132. Mr. Speaker, most schools in Ghana do not have access to clean water

and sanitation facilities. For a lot of the boarding schools, access to

water remain a major challenge and affect learning and other critical

activities of the schools.
133. As part of efforts to address the deficit in water provision, Government

has decided, as a priority over the medium term, to ensure that all

primary, junior and senior high schools in the country have access to

clean and potable water.
134. The Ministry of Works and Housing will collaborate with the Ministry of

Education to undertake a needs assessment of water and sanitation

facilities in all existing schools and draw up a programme to meet the

existing gaps. With regards to new schools, conscious effort will be

made to provide adequate water and sanitation facilities as part of the

essential requirements for the schools.
Infrastructure Development through Public Private Partnership

(PPP)
135. The country faces an infrastructure funding gap of US1.5 billion a

year. In the coming year, government will increase its effort to involve

the private Sector in public infrastructure development. In connection

with that a PPP Law is being developed to provide the framework for

the increased involvement of the private to meet the current

infrastructure deficit.
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136. It is the expectation of Government that Ghanaian development

professionals and institutions will appropriately position themselves to

participate actively in the opportunity open to the Private Sector and

thereby pride themselves as having provided adequate local content in

this new business initiative.
Millennium Challenge Account
137. Mr. Speaker, with the successful completion of the Compact I, Ghana

was selected as one of the four countries to submit proposals for

Compact II. Taking cognisance of the critical energy requirement of

the country, the Compact II has been entirely earmarked for the

energy sector. It is expected that the implementation in the Compact

will make Ghana self-sufficient in Energy generation

DACF Management Reforms
138. Mr. Speaker, aligning, MMDA's budget with the national budget will

provide a medium term outlook in all sources of funding to the

MMDAs. In connection with that, measures will be put in place to

ensure that DACF, DDF and UDG ceilings are determined at the

budget preparation stage. It is expected that the timely provision of

such information will improve the efficiency and effectiveness of

budget management at the local level.
'Girls in ICT' Programme nascent
139. To increase the interest of girls in ICT knowledge, the Ministry of

Communication will collaborate with the Ministry of Gender Children

and Social Protection to initiate the celebration of girls in ICT

Programme as part of the activities marking the annual

commemoration of the World Communication and Information Society

Day.
Securities Depository
140. Mr. Speaker, the country has two depositories for the management of

stocks and other securities. These depositories are databases that

store electronic information of individuals and group investments

made for treasury bills, bonds, shares etc.
141. Mr. Speaker, in 2013 the two Depositories will be merged to create

one National depository for all securities. This will provide easy access

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to information on securities, enhance efficiency in the securities

market and lower transaction cost.
142. Mr. Speaker, government will also implement the following measures

to improve efficiency in the delivery of services in 2013. They include:

ï‚· A temporary freeze on the creation of new GYEEDA modules

and the recruitment of additional new beneficiaries in pursuance

of government policy of reviewing and re-aligning GYEEDA

activities;
ï‚· A review of the allowances of Chiefs to include judicial

allowances in response to their adjudication role;
 The provision of GH₵10,000,000.00 to furnish the Parliamentary

Tower Block and GH₵10,000,000.00 for the construction of MPs

Constituency Offices;
ï‚· The registration of all government Vehicles with GV Number

Plates.
ï‚· The introduction of a hire purchase plan for the acquisition of

Vehicles by government officials;
ï‚· Taking of inventory of all government Vehicles in all MDAs and

MMDAs will be undertaken;
ï‚· The standardisation of allocation of fuel coupon for official use

across Ministries;
ï‚· The piloting of electronic toll collection on the Tema Motor-way

and other road networks;
ï‚· The Media Development Facility will be resourced with additional

GH₵2,000,000.00;
ï‚· The promotion of the use of Solar Energy and portable Gas

stoves;
ï‚· The restructuring of the National Board for Small Scale

Industries (NBSSI) into an umbrella supervisory body for SMEs;

and
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ï‚· The consolidation of the role of National Identification Authority

(NIA) to be responsible for the compilation and management of

all primary Biometric data for official use.
SECTORAL PERFORMANCE AND OUTLOOK
ECONOMIC SECTOR
Performance for 2012
Agriculture
143. Mr. Speaker, the use of technology to improve agricultural production

has been the main objective of Government policy in agriculture. The

key interventions are: the adoption of livestock production

technologies, agricultural mechanization, irrigation development,

fertilizer subsidy, seed improvement, quality standardization, and the

implementation of modern buffer stock management techniques.

144. In this regard, Mechanization Service Centres were established in 62

districts. The Agricultural Machinery Subsidy Programme also provided

150 units of 50HP Cabrio compact tractors imported in semi knockdown

forms. The first lot of 50 units of these tractors were distributed

to smallholder farmers across the country.
145. Mr. Speaker, under the Fertilizer and Seed Subsidy Programme

300,000 farmers benefitted from 170,000mt of fertilizer and 20,000kg

of improved seeds of maize, rice and soybean.
Fisheries and Aqua Culture
146. Construction works have begun in earnest on the Anomabo Fisheries

College to improve then knowledge and skills of the players in the

sector. A curriculum for the college has also been developed.

Lands and Natural Resources
147. The core objectives in natural resource management is to ensure

efficient and sustainable management and utilization of the nation's

lands, forests, wildlife and mineral resources for the socio-economic

growth and development of the country. To accomplish these

objectives the following programmes were undertaken:

Theme: â€Sustaining Confidence in the Future of the Ghanaian Economyâ€-

39
ï‚· 9,426 hectares of land were demarcated for afforestation, out of

which 3,698 hectares were planted with trees. This created not

only over10,000 full time jobs but also restored restored

degraded forest landscape and addressed the deficit in wood

supply for both industrial and domestic purposes.
ï‚· the establishment of the Regional Task Forces to collaborate

with National Security to address issue of illegal mining and

resultant land degradation. So far, five regional task forces are

operational in the Eastern, Greater Accra, Ashanti, Western and

Central Regions;
ï‚· the completion of a blueprint to establish District Lands

Commission Offices to decentralize land administration services;

and
ï‚· the completion of a policy document on granting large tracts of

agricultural land to improve the management of land acquisition

in the country.
Trade and Industry
148. Mr. Speaker, the Governance structure for Private Sector Development

Strategy (PSDS) II and the trustees to manage the accompanying

fund has been set up.
149. Mr. Speaker, it is gratifying to note that the Ayensu Starch factory at

To be Continued

What you know not is what will hurt you.
By: Barfi Opoku Isaac

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