By Buba Gagigo
President Adama Barrow has Hailed the Gambia Revenue Authority (GRA) for growing the country’s total revenue since he came to power in 2017 from D8 billion to almost D12.8 billion in 2022.
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“Since my administration came into office in 2017, GRA’s total revenue receipt grew significantly from about D8 billion to almost D12.8 billion in 2022, representing more than a sixty (60) percent increase. In the same period, average monthly revenue collection also grew significantly from D664 million in 2017 to D1.06 billion in 2022,” the president said at the GRA Taxpayers Award Ceremony on Saturday.
The president said the growth in tax revenue is the result of a sound government policy to expand the country’s tax base and tighten the loopholes in the national tax collection system.
“The center of our government’s fiscal policy is the conviction that our economic prosperity as a country should hinge on expanding the tax base and leveraging technology, rather than interfering with the tax codes. Consequently, this policy position aims to improve the fiscal space and enhance trade facilitation for the private sector to succeed.
“While we commend our development partners, who have continually provided tremendous support to the Gambian people in the form of grants and other types of assistance, we need to shift from depending heavily on foreign aid to relying more on domestic revenue mobilization,” the president said.
He said this has become even more necessary because the country’s economy is prone to external shocks. He said In 2022, his government was left with no option but to intervene using both fiscal and monetary tools to ease the cost burden on the public. He said for that purpose, his Government spent over D1.6 billion on fuel subsidies.
“Although it provided the much-needed relief for the Gambian people, over D1.6 billion of tax revenue was forgone by Government to make fuel internally affordable during the crisis. The money could have been spent on development projects,” the president said
President Adama Barrow was speaking at the Gambia Revenue Authority (GRA) 5th Taxpayers Award Ceremony held at a local hotel in Senegambia last Saturday.