Ghana Revenue Authority has slammed MTN’s Ghanaian subsidiary with a $773 million fine. This was disclosed in an announcement by the GRA titled “Note of Tax Assessment”.
According to Ghana’s tax authority, the fine is an outstanding tax obligation for 2014-2018. They claimed that MTN underreported its revenue in Ghana by about 30%. The $773 million tag also comprises penalties for non-disclosure and interest charges.
MTN Ghana’s Reaction
The MTN has however reacted to the bill and has not taken it lightly. The MTN Group, however, is not taking the bill lying down.
“MTN Ghana believes that the taxes due have been paid during the period under assessment and has resolved to defend MTN Ghana’s position on the assessment vigorously”. MTN Group and MTN Ghana will continue to engage with the relevant authorities on this matter and MTN remains resolute that MTN Ghana is tax compliant corporate citizen”. The company reiterated.
Since 2022, Ghana has been facing a terrible economic crisis arising from its inability to finance its external debts worth $55 billion. According to reports from Reuters, most of the government’s revenue is being pushed toward financing these debts and this has caused ballooning inflation rates.
It looks like MTN is always facing issues anywhere it goes especially tax-fine. In 2020, it won a 16-month battle against the Nigerian government and fined a $2 billion claim for back taxes against it.
It also won a longstanding $4 billion lawsuit against Turkish telecommunications group, Turkcell. The Istanbul-based telco accused it of paying bribes for the license.
As MTN continues to fight the bill, many are suspecting whether the Ghanaian government is trying to extort the networking giant to pay off its debt. This is because the GRA itself awarded MTN Ghana a Platinum Award for tax compliance for one of the years in question.
We, however, hope this is not true and that the issue will be resolved soon.
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