VAT
VAT

The Ghana Chamber of Mines is advocating for the removal of the Value Added Tax (VAT)? on exploration by its members in the extractive industry. This, the chamber believes will bring in more companies to invest to generate more employment, revenue and grow the local economy.

Vat
Vat

By so doing, the business of mining will be beneficial to both state and company, says the director of Public Affairs and Environment, Mr. Ahmed Nantogmah.

He noted that the VAT on the exploratory service undertaking by mining companies is scaring away potential investors as many are moving to other countries such as Guinea which recently reduced its corporate taxes that has made it a preferred destination for investment in recent times. Adding that it does not incentivize them to come to Ghana.

Royalties

Touching on royalties, the outspoken advocating director suggested that it is the view of the chamber that both mining companies, government and chiefs collectively agree on what the royalties should be used for instead of the current situation where the monies are paid to the chiefs and is used as deemed fit? which in the end benefit?s an individual instead of the society as a whole.

The Chamber is of that view because very often the mining companies are blamed for not contributing to the development of the area when evidence, cumulatively what the companies have paid to the chiefs who holds the land in trust is significant. And yet physically there is nothing to show for the common good. Noting that when that is done the perception that all mining companies owned by foreigners will be erased as the tangibles will be seen in all communities and a collaborative synergy will be meaningful.

Mr.? Nantogmah who is always defending the chamber, no matter what, say a lot of bursaries and scholarships are often given out to the chiefs as well as the district assemblies and yet little is seem as stated.? When questioned as why the chamber was not making their suggestions to the chiefs, he said it will tantamount to interference and has led to distoolment which the chamber does not want be involved.

GIZ / IFEJ Collaboration

Mr. Nantogmah was educating members of the Institute of Financial and Economic Journalist (IFEJ) on ?Overview of Mining Operations – Social, Economic & Environment at a three-day seminar for journalists at Koforidua. ?IFEJ has over Eighty (80) core membership of seasoned journalists across the country from both print and electronic media. ?IFEJ members cover economic, business & financial,? and the extractive industries.

The Second? of its kind and sponsored by GIZ in cooperation with the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) (IFEJ) to hold a series of capacity building for IFEJ members on governance of the extractives.? This collaboration with IFEJ seeks to deepen media coverage on resource governance issues in both print and electronic media. A quick scan has shown that the media?s involvement in strengthening accountability in this sector is rather weak as most of the coverage either cover illegal small scale mining ?and related activities. ?Media, as institutions with oversight responsibility, a deeper engagement on these issues will complement the work of Parliament while at the same time engaging the public in a wider discourse.

Main Objective

The workshops are also intended to equip the media professionals with the necessary expertise to assume the crucial role as an enabler and guarantor of good governance in the sector. Also provide a platform to introduce and discuss the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI) reports, enhance understanding of the sector governance and deepen discussions so as to broaden national discourse. To emphasize the benefits of good governance, i.e. transparency and accountability, in the extractive sector for inclusive and sustainable development.

Minerals

He explained that there many other lesser known minerals that Ghana should take advantage of instead of concentrating on Gold, Bauxite Manganese which are the major ones but Ghana has clay, marble and others which are not mined. Salt is a major mineral that could give Ghana a head start in this with very little environmental impact. And because resources are finite those resources must be judiciously used. He explained that the notion that about 80% of mining companies resources are kept outside Ghana cannot be true as what is left cannot operate the mines at all.

?Impact

The activities of the industry has both negative and positive impact on the communities that they work in. skills, tech transfer, social amenities, training University? that now send out expatriates to other countries, local economy such as transport and logistics, locations of banking services are a few of the positive impact while the environment one is obvious.

 

Source:

?Seibik Bugri

www.ifejghana.com

www.goxi.org/profile/seibikbugri

www.spyghana.com

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