Telecom giant, MTN Ghana, last year paid a total of GHC1.48 billion in taxes, out of which GHC1.3 billion went to the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA).
The National Communications Authority and Ghana Investments Fund for Electronic Communication (GIFEC) – the regulators, between them received the remaining amount of GHC184 million.
MTN Ghana’s total revenue for period stood at GHC4.2 billion, a 23.5 per cent increase over the previous year’s figure of GHC3.4 billion.
Its contribution to the total national revenue was put at three per cent and involved payment of withholding tax on suppliers, withholding tax on dividend, communication service tax, corporate tax, levies and duties.
Mr. Selorm Adadevoh, the Chief Executive Officer announced this during an engagement with News Editors in Accra and described 2018 as a flourishing year for MTN Ghana with successes chalked across its endeavours. It posted a profit before tax of GHC1.079 billion and a net profit of GHC 755 million.
One per cent of the net profit was given back to society in investments mainly in the areas of education, health and economic empowerment under Corporate Social Initiatives (CSI), spearheaded by the MTN Foundation.
In 2017, its profit before tax was GHC980 million, while the net profit came to GHC719 million.
Mr. Adadevoh said one of their most remarkable achievements was the launch of the Initial Public Offering on the Ghana Stock Exchange, (GSE) which attracted a record of 128,000 total shareholders, with 127,000 being Ghanaians. GHC1.15 billion was raked in.
The previous record on the GSE was 10,000 shareholders with GHC326 million respectively.
As of December 2018, MTN had paid GHC139 million in interests to eight million of its 13 million mobile money customers, who had saved money in their wallets.
It is working with key players in the cocoa industry and agro input suppliers towards utilising mobile money services for payment of farmers’ income as well as for purchasing supplies by farmers.
Through the Company’s partnership with foreign remittance companies, US$90 million had been transferred in the first quarter of 2019 for payments to the wallets of customers.
Mr Adadevoh said the receipts were expected to grow and was going to help integrate forex into the Ghanaian economy.
Internally, the Company was investing more in pushing women into the field of technology and managerial positions, as it endeavoured to improve the general human resource and provide sound working environment.
Mr Adadevoh and his team, answered varied questions from the editors, including the challenges with mobile money interoperability and improving security for mobile money agents, as some have come under armed attacks in recent times.
Mr Kenneth Ashigbey, the Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Chamber of Communications, commended MTN for its strong performance and significant contribution to national revenue for socio-economic development.
He appealed for a reduction in the taxes paid by telecoms, saying, the 40 per cent overall tax was too high.
“An industry which employs more than half a million people should be encouraged to do more for the nation rather than having to pay 40 per cent on every cedi received,” he added.
Mr Yaw Boadu Ayeboafo, the Chairman of the National Media Commission, also applauded MTN for their great delivery, accountability and transparency it had exhibited in its financial statement.
He urged journalists to use the right channels to seek financial accountability from companies to ensure that Ghana’s interest remained supreme.
Mr Roland Affail Monney, the President for the Ghana Journalists Association, on his part, urged the MTN to support the Association to promote high journalistic standards through reward schemes and digital infrastructure.