GRA confident ICUMS will boost trade facilitation in Africa

The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has expressed confidence in the Integrated Customs Manage­ment System (ICUMS) as a tool to boost trade facilitation in Africa, following its implementation in Ghana.

The single window electronic customs trade and revenue mobilisation tool, which has been implemented at the Tema and Ta­koradi ports (Ghana), is set to be replicated in The Gambia’s seaport.

Data provided by the government has shown that revenue generated from Ghana’s sea and land borders has increased by about 33 per cent, from GH¢12 billion in 2019 to GH¢16 bn, since its deployment of ICUMS in June 2020.

Reverend Ammishaddai Owusu-Amoah, the Commissioner-General of GRA, noted that when the project is extended to other African countries, it would serve as a major tool to facilitate trade on the continent.

He spoke to the Ghana News Agency on the sidelines of a visit by officials from Ghana Link Network Services Ltd Network Services Ltd, the ICUMS implementer and Customs Uni-Pass Agency of Korea (CU­PIA), partner for the project.

He said: “It is an opportunity for a Gha­naian company to move into another coun­try and deploy a system that have successful use in Ghana and Gambia and Ghana Link would get contracts in other countries and that would boost trade facilitation.”

Rev. Owusu-Amoah added that the proj­ect, when scaled up, would create oppor­tunities for Ghanaians to go and work in other countries.

On the success of the implementation of ICUMS in Ghana, Rev. Owusu-Amoah said: “Even in the pilot phase, we’ve seen significant improvement in the returns that we get from the auctions of various vehi­cles and goods.”

“The ICUMS system generally, has been excellent so far, we have seen significant improvement in our revenue generation, we have seen improved efficiency and received commendations from our stakeholders, which include importers, exporters, and freight forwarders,” he added.

Mr Nick Danso Adjei, the Chairman of Ghana Link, was confident that the system would help transform the trade landscape in the sub-region and the continent by making African countries achieve their “right reve­nue” at their various borders.

He noted that though there were some challenges during the initial implementation of the project: “All the stakeholders are satisfied with the performance of ICUMS, which has had a great impact on trade and revenue generation.”

Mr Kim Yoon-Shik, the Chair­man of CUPIA, expressed appre­ciation to GRA and all stakehold­ers for their support in making the implementation of ICUMS successful in Ghana.

He said the Korean Customs would deepen its relationship with GRA for mutual benefits, while adding more modules to improve on the functionalities of ICUMS to further increase revenue generation for Ghana. — GNA

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