The Association of Ghana Industries has asked government, as a matter of urgency, to reverse its decision for a reduction in the benchmark values at the port.
President of the Association of Ghana Industries, Dr Yaw Adu Gyamfi speaking to Joy FM at a forum on job creation said the reduction in the benchmark values will collapse local businesses.
“The recent government policy of reduction in benchmark values by 50% for general goods and 30% for automobiles, what the government is saying is that all these imports that are coming into the country, they are reducing the duty by 50% what are you saying? it means you are promoting importation rather than promoting local production, as a result, there is going to be an influx of import in the country these imports will displace our locally manufactured products.”
Government after the reduction of import duty by 50 per cent and 30 per cent for cars said the decision will not affect local businesses negatively.
The spokesperson for the Vice President Dr Gideon Boako said it has become necessary for government to reduce the import duty because most goods in the country do not pass through the appropriate channel making it difficult to get the needed revenue as a country.
Dr Gideon Boako said: “Actually the point is that Ghana here we are not in shortage of anything the goods are already coming in to the market but they are not passing through the right channel because when you look at the data it suggests that in Lome from 2013 to 2018 the volume of container that passes through the Lome port increase by 300% but Tema port by 4%, it means that when you look at the volume of goods that are on the market today they are not coming through Tema, they are coming through unapproved means so by reducing it they will pass through the Tema port, this is not in any way an attempt to say that we are going to be dumping goods on the country and kill local businesses the good are already coming to the country anyway but through unapproved ways so when we reduce it they pass through the approve channels and we get the revenue.”
“You saw the rousing welcome to the port announcement it actually represent the sentiment of Ghanaians, so their benchmark value for every good that comes to the port and what we are saying is that the benchmark, for instance, a particular container of goods we reduce it by 50%,” he added.
Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has disclosed that Cabinet has approved for a reduction of import duty by 30% for cars and it will take effect tomorrow April 4.
Addressing Ghanaians at a town hall meeting in Accra today, Dr Bawumia said import duty will be reduced by 50 per cent but 30% for cars.
“To reduce the incidence of smuggling and enhance revenue, the benchmark or delivery values of imports have been reduced by 50 per cent except for vehicles which will be reduced by 30% effective 4th April 2019.
“This means, for example, if a container was previously assessed for duty at a value of $20,000, it will now be assessed from tomorrow at a value of $10,000. We expect that the higher volumes of at least 50% annually and increase custom revenue,” the Vice President said.