President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has announced plans by the government to reform the country’s import regime to reduce the high duties at the ports.
“We have realised from the studies we have done that our ports are not competitive, and the import regime in our country is far too high”.
“We are dealing with it, and, very soon, the measures that government will roll out will become known to all of you. I am not talking next year, or in six months’ time, I am talking very, very soon,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo said this when he addressed a town hall meeting of Ghanaians resident in Worcester, Massachusetts, in the United States of America on Saturday.
Some trade unions, including the Ghana Union of Traders Associations (GUTA), have petitioned the government to review the high taxes and duties on imported items.
Already, the introduction of the paperless port system has, according to the Minister for Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, reduced the cost of doing business at the ports.
Appearing before parliament to answer a question posed by MP for Adaklu constituency, Mr Kwame Agbodza, on whether or not the introduction of the paperless port has increased cost of doing business at the ports, the Minister indicated that the initiative has rather decreased the cost of doing business.
“The results (of the Paperless Port system) showed that the cost components of doing business at the country’s ports have reduced from seven to three cost components. This has, subsequently, reduced the total costs from GH¢1,280 to GH¢320,” Ken Ofori-Atta said.
He continued, “This means that the paperless system reduced cost of doing business at the ports by GH¢960 representing 75 per cent savings. Hence, importers are now making savings of 75 per cent as a result of the implementation of the paperless system.”
BY TIMES REPORTER