Executive Director of Inspire Today Foundation, Mrs. Etornam Sey has implored the government to provide support to local producers of menstrual hygiene products whilst exempting them from the 15% Value Added Tax (VAT).
She made the prompt in an exclusive interview with UniversNews following a bill proposal on the taxation of menstrual hygiene products.
The Member of Parliament for Madina in Greater Accra Region, Honorable Xavier Sosu presented a private member bill to parliament to advocate for removal of taxes from sanitary pads
The bill seeks an amendment of customs tariffs and levies to remove the 15% VAT Act 2020, (Act 1082) to reclassify menstrual hygiene products from final consumer goods to zero-rated essential social goods.
The Executive Director of Inspire Today Foundation, which is dedicated to providing menstrual hygiene products for free to school-going girls who cannot afford the products added her voice to the advocacy and described the 15% VAT on sanitary pads as outrageous.
“With women making up the majority of Ghana’s population, 15 .6 million women, representing about 50 .7% of the population per the 2021 population and housing census, it is outrageous we are placing this much taxes (15 % VAT) on sanitary pads. “
Mrs. Sey also spoke on the advantage of exempting menstrual hygiene products from VAT as well as supporting local producers of said product.
“So imagine that government empowers local producers, gives money to local producers, or ensure that we do not pay the VAT at all. If I’m producing sanitary pads, I am not paying any VAT on it. It would be so cheap that we would be able to go to the rural communities and ensure that the girls are not using the materials they are using there.”
Inspire Today Foundation is a network organization nurturing a nationwide movement of female leaders through a concerted effort at achieving the sustainable development goals 3 and 5 which is promoting good health and well being and enforcing gender equality.
Story by: Esenam Esther Ofori | univers.ug.edu.gh