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07.11.2019 Business & Finance

Journalist Aid GRA To Retrieve Gh¢1.3million From Shaaxi Mining Over Tax Evasion

By Julian Owusu-Abedi
Journalist Aid GRA To Retrieve Gh¢1.3million From Shaaxi Mining Over Tax Evasion

After some weeks of following up on leads(newspaper reports and documents) given to the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) by this reporter, the state agency has managed to scoop back from Shaanxi Mining Ghana Limited(SMGL) a whooping Gh¢1,343,173.00( One Million, Three hundred and forty three thousand, one hundred and seventy three Ghana Cedis) for non-payment of taxes including penalties and interest from 2014 to 2017.

Readers will recall that The New Crusading GUIDE had earlier in February 2019 done a publication on its front page captioned: ‘SHAANXI RAKES IN ESTIMATED $317,002,556… Through Large Scale Galamsey’. A story which was based on Shaanxi’s own official work schedule and other documents intercepted from other sources including the Supervisory body itself, the Minerals Commission.

According to` the report from the Audit Factory, a unit of the GRA and signed by the then head of the Unit who is now the Agt. Director of Domestic Tax Revenue Division Dr. Martin Yamborigya, it stated that per their reconciliation of information obtained from the Minerals Commission and examination of same, it revealed that Shaanxi was liable for non-payment of royalties and for taxes not withheld under the Internal Revenue Act 2000 (relevant sections captured in the full report). Therefore computation of those figures caught Shaanxi liable for taxes and penalty/interest amounting to Gh¢1,343,173.00( One Million, Three hundred and forty three thousand, one hundred and seventy three Ghana Cedis).

However, on the issue of corporate tax itself, Shaanxi once again appeared to have cracked the magic wand to get OFFICIAL figures from two different state agencies changed for them in order that they may not be liable for corporate taxes which runs into nearly five million Ghana cedis.

This is how; based on the information given to the Audit Factory, the GRA proceeded to write officially for records on Shaanxi from the Minerals Commission who keeps data of all gold won or sold by Shaanxi per law and also wrote to the Precious Minerals Marketing Company (PMMC) too who used to buy gold from Shaanxi.

The two state agencies(MinComm/PMMC) then responded officially to the GRA with the Minerals Commission’s record value of gold won or sold by Shaanxi totaling up to $12, 259,353(Twelve million, two hundred and fifty nine thousand, three hundred and fifty three USD) between 2014 to 2017 and the PMMC also reporting a total of Gh¢107,069,580(One hundred and seven million, sixty nine thousand, five hundred and eighty Ghana cedis) on Shaanxi between 2014 and 2016 only.

But, just when the GRA had started work on Shaanxi’s corporate tax, its PRO and the Country Director are on record to have approached one of the GRA officials to ‘consider’ them otherwise when their boss in China here of the over four million Ghana cedis quantum of taxes owed they are ‘dead’ but the officer turned them down saying; “I will never charge a tax payer a cedi less or a cedi more than what they are supposed to pay” which suggests that Shaanxi was willing to ‘buy’ except that the officer was not willing to ‘sell’.

Later, after that episode, the Audit Factory carried on with their work and just when they were about to conclude they received a letter from PMMC saying that there was a mistake with the initial figure of Gh¢107,069,580(One hundred and seven million, sixty nine thousand, five hundred and eighty Ghana cedis) and that they just realized that the actual figure is rather Gh¢16,019,256(Sixteen Million, nineteen thousand, two hundred and fifty six Ghana cedis).

Then, the GRA says fair enough then they could work with the Minerals Commission report. Along the line when the GRA had started work on the Minerals Commission report, then Minerals Commission also write to the GRA again to say that they also made a mistake and that the $12, 259,353(Twelve million, two hundred and fifty nine thousand, three hundred and fifty three USD) was wrong and that the actual figure was rather $5,826,487 (five million, eight hundred and twenty six thousand, four hundred and eighty seven USD).

So therefore, on that score Shaanxi got away with corporate taxes because what that means is that if you consider their expenditure and what they claim they are making it suggests that they are making losses rather so they can’t pay corporate tax.

But for that genuine mistakes or considerations or some kind of motivation in both instances, Ghana was going to make about Gh¢5,353,479 in corporate tax alone if the initial PMMC record stood and some $612,967 equivalent of about Ghc 3,371,322 if the Minerals Commission’s initial report also stood.

Stay Tuned…

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