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20.05.2006 Business & Finance

VAT Service closes down three shops

VAT Service closes down three shops

The Value Added Tax (VAT) Service has amidst jeering from petty traders, closed down three shops at Okaishie and Rawlings Park for failing to issue VAT invoices to customers.

They are Xin Din Limited; Dernvick Ghana Limited and Evershun Trading Company Limited, wholesalers of shoes, cooking utensils and electrical items, in that order.

Assisting the VAT Officials were five Policemen from the Rapid Deployment Unit of the Police Service led by Inspector John Essel.

The traders jeered to VAT Service officials after they arrested two salesmen at the Evershun Trading Company Limited at Rawlings Park.

Despite the jeers, Mr Patrick Komla Lartey, Supervisor, Enforcement and Debt Management of the Service, led the team to carry out its duty.

The traders questioned why the VAT Service officials decided to arrest the two salesmen instead of the white man, who owned the shop.

Looking through the books of Evershun Trading Company, the VAT Service officials found that since May 10 2006 the Company had been using ordinary paper as invoice instead of VAT invoices.

At Xin Din Limited, who shared the same premises with the VAT Service, no VAT invoices were being issued to customers.

Some customers told the officials that the salesmen had stopped issuing VAT invoices to them.

Salesmen at Dernvick Company Limited also failed to issue VAT invoices to customers.

Briefing journalists on the operation, Mr Lartey said the VAT Service had information that some traders in their bid to evade tax sold their items at dawn while some companies also parked their vans at the Rawlings Park from where they transacted business.

He said the VAT Service had recruited more staff that would be on the ground to check non-issuance of invoices.

Mr Lartey said the VAT Service Fraud Unit would ask for purchasing records and conduct tax audit to find out if taxes had been evaded.

He urged the public to insist on VAT invoices whenever they transacted any business.