Kwaku Sakyi-Addo Chief Executive Officer of the Chamber of Telecommunications –advocate for the telecommunications industry — has reiterated the call for scrapping the 20 percent import tax on mobile devices in order to stem smuggling of the devices into the country.
“Currently people are smuggling handsets in suitcases and bags into the country in order to avoid taxes. Because they are not paying taxes, the revenue assumptions made by the tax authorities are being compromised and taxes on mobile devices actually add up to about 45 percent of the cost of the devices,” he said.
Mr. Sakyi-Addo explained that the smugglers are able to undercut the companies that operate above board, pay taxes and employ people, and pay SSNIT and obey the law.
“So those who play by the rules are struggling to compete against those who operate in the shadows, and who deny the government its revenue. If the government removes the 20 percent import duty then smuggling should diminish.
“When smuggling diminishes, those operating in the shadows will be compelled to compete on a level playing field with the genuine, law-abiding dealerships and agents,” he added.
Speaking at the launch of Tecno’s Phantom Z smartphone, Mr. Sakyi-Addo said with the 20 percent import duty gone, more people could afford genuine smartphones from genuine dealers.
“If more people are able to purchase the phones because they are affordable, then they will use them. When they use them, then you can tax them on usage. That is, the Talk Tax or Communication
Tax (CST) which you cannot dodge.
“So it is in the government’s interest, it is in the interest of the people; it is in the interest of fairness to genuine tax-paying dealers, and the interest of the entire mobile eco-system and that of the entire economy that the 20percent import duty on mobile devices is removed in the very next budget,” he added.
The new device, the Phantom Z, is a modern day handheld stunner. Riding on the back of an ever-popular range of upwardly mobile, yet economically-friendly devices (launched over the last two years), Tecno looks set to capture the hearts and minds of the mobile market’s 15-35’s with the Phantom Z.
With an expandable memory up to 32 GB, it is also a 5.2 AMOLED Full HD portable device with Gorilla Glass, and comes with a battery standby time of some 300 hours or 26 hours of talk time.
A Dolby digital sound device, it provides an
quality made for the stylish consumer, is social-media friendly, and runs on the Android 4.4.2 operating system.
Other features include a dual flash
, front camera LED flash (allows face detection), both of which offer HDR optimisation effect, textured leather grain back cover; wave hand shutter, touch capture, voice capture, gesture shot, Wi-Fi and blue-tooth-ready, brilliant video composition, and FM radio among other features.
“All these, are embedded in Tecno’s resolve to satisfy an awesome generation of mobile phone users who live the smart life,” Danny Glover, Business Development Manager at Tecno said.
“We are confident that the Phantom Z will take pride of place in the market with its revolutionary features and competitive pricing, and will set the standard for the other devices in its category,” he added.
Source: The BFT