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Ghana and Nigeria Target Gains from Excise Taxes

Excise duty stamp introduced in Ghana

The stamp will curb illicit trading of excisable goods. According to the government, the illicit trade has threatened the brand of legitimate businesses and caused revenue loss. Illicit trading could be in form of smuggling and counterfeiting excisable products, or under reporting excisable goods. The digital and security features of the stamp enable the authorities detect whether taxes and duties were paid on the excisable goods. Through these features, it would be harder to carry out illicit trading of excisable goods. The following products must have the excise tax stamp:

  1. Cigarettes and other tobacco products

  2. Alcoholic beverages including spirits whether bottled, canned, or packaged in any other form

  3. Non-alcoholic carbonated beverages whether bottled, canned or packaged in any other form

  4. Bottled water

  5. Any other excisable product prescribed by the Minister of Finance[3]

Enforcement of the stamp commences from January 1, 2018 at the ports of entry, and March 1, 2018 at points of sale.

Nigeria increases excise rate for alcoholic beverages and tobacco

Nigeria’s President has approved a review of existing excise duty rates for alcoholic beverages and tobacco. The new rates are effective from June 4th, 2018. The Nigerian governments’ medium-term fiscal policy objective is to increase tax from non-oil revenue from 6% to 15%. Thus the increase is in line with this objective. Additionally, the Finance Minister, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun stated that the increase aimed at reducing the health hazards associated with consuming tobacco and alcohol. The rate would increase over a three year period to mitigate the impact on prices of products. The excise duty rate on tobacco will be a combination of a 20% ad valorem rate and a specific rate which increases from 2018 through 2020. For alcoholic beverages, specific rates will replace ad-valorem rates. The specific rates also increase from 2018 through 2020 to moderate the effect on prices for consumers.

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