Denying Pullman Project of tax incentives would be discriminatory

Accra Platinum Properties Limited, Project Promoter of the Pullman Accra City Project, says, there is absolutely nothing in appropriate with its application to the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) to be granted tax incentives.

A press statement by their lawyers, a copy of which was made available to the Ghana News Agency (GNA), said it would not be out of place that the Company would be granted tax waivers pursuant to Act 865.

It added that any decision to deny the Company of the same incentives as those granted to projects/companies in the same priority sector would rather be discriminatory and inconsistent with the letter and spirit of the GIPC Act.

The statement, signed by Nana Agyei Baffour Awuah, Managing Partner, Sarkodie Baffour Awuah and Partners, was in response to what it cast as factually inaccurate media reports.

Tax waivers, it stated, are part of the incentive regime provided under the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre Act, 2013 (Act 865), to qualifying companies – both Ghanaian and foreign-owned, registered with the GIPC.

Specifically, companies are eligible for the “strategic investor” status where their projects fall within the priority sectors and the investment equals or exceeds US$50,000,000 and offers significant economic benefits, including increased employment and generation of incomes and tax revenues.

The Pullman Project, a joint venture (JV) between Inter-Afrique Holdings Limited, a private Ghanaian company, and the Ghana Infrastructure Investment Fund (GIIF), first registered their project with the GIPC in October 2014.

The statement said it had been renewing their registration every year and that after four years of extensive project development activities, the Company, in March, last year, applied to GIPC for applicable investment incentives as a strategic investor for its hospitality project, the Pullman Project, in line with Sections 25 and 26 of Act 865.

It pointed out that the Pullman Project would not be the only private sector venture to be granted the strategic investor status by the GIPC.

In recent years, the strategic investor status and the related tax incentives have been granted by GIPC to many private investment projects, spread over a wide range of priority areas in the Ghanaian economy including Energy, Manufacturing and Hospitality/Hotel.

Major companies such as Tang Palace Hotel Ltd, KHI GH Ltd (Movenpick), African Hospitality Ltd (Marriott) and GCC Resorts Limited (Kempinski), just to mention but a few, are examples of Hospitality/Hotel investment projects undertaken under the GIPC’s strategic investor incentive regime.

The statement said: A grant of the application for tax waivers on materials, machinery, among others, for the execution of the Pullman Project would further the objective of the GIPC to promote investment in the Ghanaian economy.

We state that all the necessary legal requirements and procedure for the Pullman Hotel Project to be granted incentives by the GIPC have been fulfilled, it added.

The statement comes amid attempts by the political opposition to connect the tax waiver with cronyism.

Source: Ghana News Agency