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30.07.2004 Business & Finance

Ghana Hotels Association complains about heavy taxes

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Pepease (ER), July 30, GNA- The National President of the Ghana Hotels Association (GHA), Nana Adjei Twinin, has appealed to the Government to review taxes imposed on the hospitality services to help promote Ghana as an affordable tourist destination. Nana Twinin said the high cost of hotel services was due to multiple taxes imposed on operators.

Opening the third National Executive Council meeting of the GHA, Nana Twinin said members were finding it difficult to generate adequate financial resources to maintain, upgrade or expand their facilities. He said apart from these taxes, hotel operators had to pay for registration and operational license fees, to the Ghana Tourist Board, the District Assemblies, the Ghana National Fire Service, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Ghana Copyright Board. Nana Twinin said the Association was not consulted when taxes are increased.

The Association said Management of Akosombo International Hotel, in the Asuogyaman District are being asked to pay a property rate of 30 million cedis this year when they had paid 1.8 million cedis last year. The Ohene Nana Classic Hotel on the Kwahu Ridge is to pay a property rate of six million cedis when it had paid only 45,000 cedis last year.

Nana Twinin commended the Government for its decision to convert the EREDEC Hotel at Koforidua into a special hotel training school and called for an expedited action on the project. He said the GHA, was eager to help its members to improve upon their services to meet the new Economic Commission for West Africa's (ECOWAS) Standardization Scheme.

The Deputy Eastern Regional Minister, Mr Gustav Narh Dometey, urged the Association to be transparent, honest and committed to the ethics of their profession.

Responding to the concerns expressed by the members, Mr Dometey described it as alarming and indicated that Government would meet the Association to find an amicable solution. Mr Dometey said the proposed hotel school would begin in the first quarter of 2005. The Secretary of Tema Sub-Region of the GHA, Nana Kodjo Opei 1V, appealed to the Government, to consider granting the Association a tax holiday. GNA

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