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South African govt seeks truce in MTN Ghana, GRA tax dispute

South Africa’s Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Dr Naledi Pandor has admonished MTN Ghana to work closely with Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) to devise a solution to the raging tax liability dispute

She made the remark after being briefed on the tax liability dispute between the GRA and MTN.

According to her, the South African government is committed to promoting increased South African investment in Ghana in particular and the continent in general.

South Africa is one of the largest foreign direct investors in Ghana, mainly in mining, communication, beverages, retail and franchising, etc.

These investments contribute to the Ghanaian gross domestic product (GDP) and job creation. According to the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), there are over 100 South African Companies registered and operating in Ghana, employing over 19,087 Ghanaians and 510 expatriates.

Over the past 10 years, South African companies have undertaken over 170 projects in Ghana valued in excess of $1,431,523,166 US dollars in capital investment.

The Minister has previously held meetings with Chief Executive Officers of South African companies invested and operating on the African continent.

They have reported an increasing number of difficulties ranging from: unfavourable market conditions and inconsistent regulatory frameworks, inconsistent tax regimes, repatriation of funds and delays in loan repayments.

Of major concern is that competitors of South African companies from other parts of the world do not appear to be subjected to the challenges that South African companies are subjected to.

These unfavourable conditions have led to disinvestment in some African markets by major South African companies such as: Shoprite, Game, Mr Price, Foschini, Woolworths, Tiger Brands, Sasol- Chemicals, Sasol-Gas, Group Five, Murray and Roberts, Metrolife Group, Telkom, Southern Sun, Protea Group, to name but a few.

The disinvestment has had a devastating impact on employment opportunities, poverty and inequalities in particular and GDP growth in general.

#The Minister calls on the parties involved to do everything possible to find an amicable solution to these reported challenges.

“Our common destiny as outlined in the Agenda 2063 aspirations, depend on a win-win intra-African collaboration and cooperation” she said.

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