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The Flag bearer of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has urged the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) to reduce tariffs to bring them at par with global rates.

Commenting on a statement by the Public Utilities and Regulatory Commission (PURC) that the ECG should suspend its billing system, the NPP leader said the current rates as charged for electricity in the country already put local enterprises in a very un-competitive comparison.

“I think the matter is more fundamental and should go further than that. If you look at the rates we are charging, industry, as well as domestic users, for electricity in Ghana, compared, for instance, to Cote d’Ivoire, already, it puts our enterprises in a very un-competitive comparison,” he said.

Ghana/Cote d’Ivoire

Comparing the rates charged for both domestic and commercial users of industry, Nana Akufo-Addo said the disparities put Ghana in a disadvantaged position and attributed the high rates charged by the ECG to the many taxes charged by the government.

“In Ghana, my understanding is that the tariff for commercial users is 32 US cents/kilowatt hour. The Ivorian equivalent is 13 US cents/kilowatt hour. Again, for domestic users, we are talking about 19.28 US cents/kilowatt hour, when Cote d’Ivoire’s equivalent is a tariff of 9 US cents/kilowatt hour.

“So, you put these things together, and, already, Ghanaian industry and economic activity are suffering unnecessarily. A large part of it is due to the taxes, the insatiable appetite of the Mahama government for taxes – 10 per cent energy levy which is charged for both domestic and commercial uses; a service charge of GH¢7 flat rate for every consumer and a VAT of 17½ per cent for commercial users,” he said.

The NPP flag bearer said he believed that the rates could be significantly reduced to bring the electricity tariff system in the country to a much more competitive relationship with that of its neighbours and what was going on in the region.

“It is important for us to recognise in Ghana that, whatever we are doing, we are doing so in a globally competitive context, and if we don’t recognise that, many of the decisions we make about the management of our economy are going to put us at a disadvantage from the word go.

“I am saying it is absolutely imperative and urgent that the public authorities find a way to reduce electricity tariffs in our country immediately and do so now,” he stated.

Listen to Nana Addo in the attached audio below

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– See more at: http://www.graphic.com.gh/news/politics/64416-reduce-electricity-tariffs-now-akufo-addo.html#sthash.ts8ZBeSj.dpuf

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