AGI, Importers and Exporters Association disagree on reversal of Benchmark values

The Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) has urged the government not to heed calls by some stakeholders for the implementation of the reversal of Benchmark values to be suspended for further consultations.

Speaking in an interview with Joy News, Executive Director of the Association, Seth TwumAkwaboah said the government should go ahead with the implementation of the benchmark values while it holds consultations aside.

“I am fully against it, government should not suspend implementation, rather consultation should continue let’s implement, let’s see what happens along the line. The fixed product that we have challenges in terms of output, let’s see how we can quickly close those capacities and ensure that local capacity is institutive,” he noted.

He explained that the suspension of the Benchmark values would imply that local industries would be subverted.

According to MrAkwaboah, with the Africa Continental Free Trade in place, local industries capacity must be boosted to prevent imported goods from overtaking the local market.

“If you don’t build your local capacity as you are allowing import to come in duty-free, it will wipe out all your market but if you boost local capacity now, then you can also export to enter other markets so if you suspend it means that you are killing local industry forever and it will never work so let’s continue the consultation but the implementation star, “he explained.

Meanwhile, Executive Secretary of the Importers and Exporters Association of Ghana, Samson AasakiAwingobit believed that the implementation of the policy was coming at an unfortunate time.

“We think that it is not the right time. Look at the economic situation of ordinary Ghanaians, their financial status viz-a-viz they say the government is the largest employer. I strongly believe that it is not the right time looking at the cost of living in the country now,” he stated.

Effective Tuesday, January 4, 2022, the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) will begin the implementation of the government’s policy directive on the reversal of the reduction of values of imports on 43 selected items.

The items to be affected include the home delivery value of vehicles, goods on which benchmark values are applied and all other goods.

This means the Home Delivery Value of vehicles will no longer be discounted by 30 percent.

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