Asaase News sources close to government have confirmed that cabinet at a meeting held on Friday, 2 February 2024, has unanimously agreed to drop the previously approved policy of charging 15% Value Added Tax (VAT) on electricity.
This means that power consumers will no longer be required to pay the controversial 15% VAT on top of their bills.
The government has also agreed to initiate a conversation with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to come to a concensus on how it can make up for the revenue shortfall occasioned by the decision to drop the VAT on electricity policy through some extra cuts on spending.
What is clear is that even though the 15% VAT on electricity was previously approved by Cabinet, and also by Parliament, the reaction of the Trade Unions Congress (TUC) and others to the proposed policy, have led to a serious rethink and the decision to reverse it.
As to what the final decision will be on the policy, as in being completely scrapped, Asaase News sources familiar with the Cabinet decision indicated that it will be clearer after engagements with the IMF.
“The position currently is that the 15% VAT on electricity is off, and it is likely it could either be off totally or significantly slashed,” Asaase News sources said on condition of anonymity.
Organised Labour directive
Organised Labour held a meeting on 2 February 2024, and decided to hold a nationwide demonstration on Tuesday, 13 February 2024 to push government to withdraw the directive to ECG and NEDCO to implement the 15% VAT on residential electricity consumption.
“In view of point one, notice of the intended demonstration will go to the IGP and all the 16 regional commands on Monday 5th February 2024.
“All members of Organised Labour groupings in both the public and private sector are to put on red bands at work from Monday, 5 February 2024 to Monday, 12 February 2024,” a communique from Organised Labour read.
“Directives on the route of the demonstrations and all other communications will be duly communicated by the leadership of Organised Labour.
“Organised Labour groups are expected to communicate in writing to their Employers on the actions to be taken. If the directive on the VAT is not withdrawn after the demonstration, Organised Labour will meet and take a decision on when to initiate a nationwide strike again,” the Organised Labour further read.