Graphic Business News

Increase in Communication Service Tax takes effect Oct 1

By: Business Desk Report
Ing. Kenneth Ashigbey - CEO, Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications

Mobile phone users are expected to pay more for the services provided by telecommunication service providers effective October 1.

This follows an ammendment of the Communication Service Tax (CST), Act 754 which has seen an increase in the cost of services provided by AirtelTigo, MTN and Vodafone.

A statement issued by the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications on behalf of its members on September 23 said the government, as part of the 2019 mid-year budget review, amended the Act  increasing CST from six per cent to nine per cent. 

It added that for every GH¢1 of recharge purchased, a nine per cent CST fee will be charged leaving GH¢0.93 for the purchase of products and services.

“CST, as specified in Act 998, is a consumer tax and will thus have to be borne by consumers. This will require modifications of what customers pay in total for communication services,” the statement signed by its Chief Executive Officer,  Ing. Kenneth Ashigbey said.

The statement added that the objective of the increase as detailed in the mid-year budget was to “develop the foundation for the creation of a viable technology ecosystem in the country.

This will comprise amongst others putting in systems to identify and combat cybercrime, protect users of information technology, combat money laundering among other financial crimes”.

Members would comply
The statement added that the service providers who are responsible corporate entities would comply fully with Ghana’s laws.

“As intended, the incidence of the modification will thus be on consumers. It will increase the cost of telecommunication services,” it said.

It added that customers of telecommunication services would be notified by their service providers of the changes when they purchase recharge and / or products and services.

The implementation of this new format of applying the CST will start on the October 1, 2019

The statement added that the telecommunications industry remained committed to full transparency and accountability to both the Government of Ghana and its customers, and it seeks the support and understanding of its customers through the implementation of the increased CST and its implications to telecommunications services and charges.