Last week, the Ghana Revenue Authority has fined MTN Ghana’s subsidiary, Scancom PLC, GHS8,209,603,842.14, which is approximated to be $773 million in US Dollars.
According to the Ghana Tax Authority, this fine is for outstanding tax obligations from 2014 to 2018. During these years, Ghana’s Revenue Authority claims that MTN had unreported its revenue in Ghana by about 30%.
This fine also comprises penalties for non-disclosure and interest charges.
The MTN Group, however, is not accepting the bill without a fight. MTN Ghana believes that the taxes had been paid during the five-year period under the assessment and has resolved to defend MTN Ghana on the assessment vigorously.
MTN Group and MTN Ghana will continue to engage with the relevant authorities on the relevant authorities on this matter and MTN remains resolute that MTN Ghana is a tax-compliant corporate citizen.
Sine 2022, Ghana has been facing worsened economic crisis stemming from its inability to finance its external debts worth about $55 billion. Most of the government’s revenue is being used to finance these debts which have caused an increase in inflation rates, which has led to the crashing of the Ghanaian economy.
As MTN continues to fight this tax evasion bill, many think that the Ghanaian government is making a desperate attempt to finance these debts, as MTN Ghana was awarded a Platinum Award for tax compliance in one of the years in question.
For the MTN Group, it seems that they regularly face fines for tax evasion. In 2020, it fought a 16-month battle against the Nigerian government who levied a $2 billion claim for back taxes against it.