The state has collected GH¢861.47 million from the Electronic Transfer Levy (E-Levy) since its introduction in May 2022. The levy imposes a 1.5% charge on electronic transfers of money by licensed entities such as banks, mobile money providers, and payment service providers. The levy is aimed at enhancing domestic tax mobilisation and expanding the tax base.
The E-Levy generated GH¢614.57 million in its first year of implementation and GH¢246.9 million in the first quarter of 2023. The data from the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) shows that the revenue from the E-Levy increased steadily every month since its inception.
In May 2022, the first month of operation, the E-Levy brought in GH¢53.58 million. The figure rose to GH¢59.23 million in June 2022 and continued to climb in July 2022 (GH¢65.07 million), August 2022 (GH¢71.29 million), September 2022 (GH¢78.95 million), October 2022 (GH¢85.73 million) and November 2022 (GH¢93.3 million) respectively.
The E-Levy has been a controversial policy that faced opposition from some sections of society, especially traders and consumers who rely on electronic transactions for their businesses and daily activities. Some critics argued that the E-Levy would increase the cost of living and discourage financial inclusion.
However, the government defended the E-Levy as a necessary measure to raise revenue for development projects and social interventions. The government also reduced the initial rate of 1.75% to 1.5% and exempted some categories of transfers from the levy after consultations with stakeholders.
The E-Levy is expected to contribute significantly to Ghana’s fiscal consolidation and economic recovery efforts in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, the E-Levy is projected to generate GH¢6.9 billion in 2023.