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Introduction of VAT in The Gambia

Taxation plays an important role in the development of a country, for which The Gambia is no exception. This is because the country is a tax-based economy and solely depends on domestic revenue mobilisation to meet its current and future development needs.

With the recently introduced value added tax (VAT) Gambians should know that this should not lead to the sky-rocketing of the prices of goods and services. This is simply because VAT has come to replace the sales Tax. It has not in any major way altered our tax structure, hence should not necessitate price increment.

With this said we have witnessed in the last few weeks a sky-rocketing of prices on goods and commodities,particularly food stuffs. The GCCI in collaboration with the Ministry of Trade held a sensitisation forum to create more awareness on the implementation on the VAT between the public and the private sector.  In the forum the GRA’s Commissioner General noted that VAT should only be charged by businesses registered and issued with a VAT registration certificate by the GRA.  Only Businesses that earn over a million Dalasi per annum are required by law to register and those who earn half a million per annum registration is optional.

If VAT should only be affecting these type of companies we should look into the reasons why the corner shop on your street has increased prices.   The people selling in their stalls have increased prices.  Everything has just inflated in price thus this being a serious problem that needs to be regulated and a solution found for prices to get back to normal.


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