Post-budget workshop helps MPs interrogate budget statement | Economy

Majority Leader Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said the post-budget workshop aims to help members interrogate critical issues when considering budget forecasts and exercise an effective oversight role.

He said it was also designed to provide MPs with an overview of the budget to enable them to debate and make meaningful contributions on the floor of the House.

He said that as a representative of the people, they had a duty to scrutinize the budget to determine how well it responded to the country’s development challenges, particular issues related to poverty eradication, gender , children and vulnerable issues, employment, social issues, infrastructural challenges. and national security.

He made the observation during a post-budget workshop for MPs on the 2022 budget statement and the government’s economic policy in Ho in the Volta region.

Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu, however, notified the government that the Minority Caucus in Parliament would not support the introduction of the proposed electronic direct debit policy in the 2022 budget statement.

He said the proposed tax was a drag on the growth of the digital economy, investment and the development of the country’s private sector.

“Mr. President, our concern is whether the online tax itself is not and will not be a hindrance to the growth of the digital economy in our country. We are convinced that the e-direct debit can also be a brake on investment and a brake on the development of the private sector in our country.

“Mr. President, we in the minority cannot and will not support the government with the introduction of this particular electronic debit. We are unable to build a national consensus on this particular issue.

The workshop aims to equip members with the necessary skills to enable them to carefully review the 2022 budget statement and the government’s economic policy and adopt the 2021 budget law.

The platform has also created an opportunity for members to share knowledge and experience and understand the government’s policy underpinnings in finance and economic planning for the year 2022.

Mr. Iddrisu added that the Minister of Finance, in his effort to redeem the economy, has sought to introduce certain measures including; the controversial electronic direct debit or digital direct debit.

He said the proposed electronic direct debit would be dangerous for the Ghanaian economy as many people would revert to the cash payment system and end the trend towards the paperless system which he said was their motivating factor. not to support the introduction of the levy.

“To paraphrase the VP, why tax the ordinary poor…since when are the poor above average for momo and the banks to be taxed and even the 1.75% electronic levy projection could just as well well rise to 3.75%,” he added. .

Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta highlighted in his commentary some of the positive fiscal and macroeconomic indicators, which he said pointed to a good economic trajectory.

He said the 2022 budget statement focused on the post-COVID-19 recovery program, revitalizing and transforming the economy while ensuring fiscal and debt sustainability to promote macroeconomic stability for the recovery process. recovery and growth of the economy.

The proposed electronic direct debit is expected to start on January 1, 2022, if approved by Parliament.

In 2020, the total value of transactions was estimated at over GH¢500 million, with the number of mobile money subscribers and users increasing by 16% in 2019.

According to a Bank of Ghana report, Ghana saw an increase of more than 120% in the value of digital transactions between February 2020 and February 2021, compared to 44% for the period from February 2019 to February 2020 due to convenience. that they offer.

Source: GNA

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Dorothy H. Lewis