A resident person's worldwide income is assessed for tax. Income from business and investment (from both Ghanaian and foreign sources) is included in determining the resident person’s assessable income.
The business and investment income of a non-resident person is included in the assessable income for a year of assessment if that income has a source in Ghana. Where a non-resident person has a Ghanaian permanent establishment (PE), any income connected with the PE is assessed to tax.
The general corporate income tax (CIT) rate is 25%.
Mining and upstream petroleum companies pay CIT at a rate of 35%, while companies principally engaged in the hotel industry pay a reduced rate of 22%.
The CIT rate for companies engaged in non-traditional exports is 8%, while banks lending to the agricultural and leasing sectors pay a CIT rate of 20% on income from those businesses.
National Fiscal Stabilisation Levy (NFSL)
The NFSL applies to specified companies and institutions to raise revenue for fiscal stabilisation of the economy. The NFSL is 5% on the profit (accounting profit) before tax on specified companies. The specified companies and institutions include:
- Banks (excluding rural and community banks).
- Non-bank financial institutions.
- Insurance companies.
- Telecommunications companies liable to collect and pay the communications service tax (CST) under the CST Act, 2008 (Act 754).
- Inspection and valuation companies.
- Companies providing mining support services.
- Shipping lines, maritime and airport terminals.
The levy shall apply to the aforementioned industries irrespective of any existing exemption granted to an entity under any other laws in Ghana. The tax payable shall not be a deductible expense in arriving at the CIT liability of an entity, and the C-G shall issue an assessment to an entity for the amount of tax payable for the period.
NFSL is payable in four equal instalments at the end of each quarter (i.e. March, June, September, and December).
The NFSL was initially scheduled to end in December 2017. However, an Act of Parliament has extended the levy to 2019.
Local income taxes
Ghana has no local, state, or provincial government taxes on income. However, other local authority bodies (i.e. District Assembly/Municipal Authority) may also apply levies based on location of business properties.