One Less Headache for Ghanaians Living Abroad

by Kofi Ayim

Ghana ports have been a headache for shippers. Open and clandestine shenanigans of bribery, corruption, and thievery have become a staple. Now, the government has come out with an App that not only tracks consignment, but calculate port duties expected to be paid.

The Vice-President of the Republic of Ghana, Alhaji Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, has urged Ghanaians to download Ghana Trade Hub, an app that allows tracking of consignment as well as calculating of port duty on shipments to Ghana.

Dr. Bawumia pointed this out in a presentation to the Ghana Chamber of Commerce, USA (GCC-USA) at a meeting held April 11 at the Loews Regency Hotel, New York.

Dr. Bawumia strongly advised Ghanaians in the diaspora to invest back home, because all economic indicators are pointing in the right directions.

He pointed out that with the discovery of large reserves of petroleum and gas, significant bauxite, as well as iron and manganese deposits, Ghana is poised to be an economic giant in the not-too-distant future.

He estimated the bauxite deposit in the neighborhood of some $50 billion with an added value of about $400 billion. The iron and manganese, according to Dr. Bawumia, will enable a steel manufacturing industry to be created.

“The best time to invest is now, either on an individual basis or in col- laboration with other investors,” he emphasized. He said that with the availability of labor and investor-friendly laws anchored by a liberal business environment, the influx of investment will transform Ghana.

Among some prudent measures’ government has taken to encourage in- vestments are the reduction from 90% to 10% and one-time physical inspection (as against undefined number of inspections) of containers at ports of entry, and the introduction of e-visa to facilitate efficiency in visa processing.

Dr. Bawumia emphasized that in the government’s endeavor to reduce corruption to the barest minimum, the country is undergoing extensive digitization of various processes.

Human interface is being reduced or eliminated and digitization is taking over. The VP cited examples of how the driver’s license and property and land registration have been digitized, and middlemen, popularly known as “goro boys,” and land guards are being eliminated.

Furthermore, the paperless system of goods clearance at the ports as well as digitized online business registration and tax ling and payment are making business transactions cheaper and more efficient.

He observed that government has upped the ante (or has it in the pipeline) in technological developments, such as the transition to solar energy in all government facilities and edifices and the use of drones for medical delivery.

Finally, the GPS address system and the ongoing Ghana Card will help identify and locate every Ghanaian and rope everybody into the tax net, which will eventually increase government revenue. That is why, to make our ports competitive, it has been possible to reduce customs duties on benchmark values of goods by 50%, and duties on vehicles by 30%. All in all, he concluded that policies introduced will bring about efficiency and reduce corruption.

The Vice-President fielded questions from members of GCC-USA. He was accompanied by the Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Mr. Mohammad Habibu Tijani, and other dignitaries.

Posted by on May 13 2019. Filed under top stories. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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