Prices of imported Chinese goods may go up due to coronavirus

Ghanaian traders who import products from the Asian markets, especially China, have said that prices of goods may increase due to the outbreak of coronavirus in the country.

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Most Ghanaian importers buy their products from China since it has one of the largest markets in the world.

After the outbreak of the coronavirus in Wuhan a city in China, most shops have closed down for the mean time.

Some employers have also asked their employees to stay home due to the outbreak. Little or no business is being done.

Meanwhile, the Ghana Union of Traders Association and other stakeholders have urged traders to cancel their planned trips until further notice.

Some importers have argued that even though this directive is for their benefit, they may be forced to increase the prices of their goods.

A trader who gave his name as Patrick told Accra-based Joy News that "In the immediate future due to the lock of shops, goods will not be coming to Ghana and that could mean an increase in prices of their goods."

"I am not going to China for now due to the coronavirus, one way or the other I may not get the goods so, this could have a big effect on my business and the prices could increase," another trader said.

A Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry had earlier cautioned traders who ply their trade in Asia to be careful in the wake of the spread of the coronavirus.

He said the government is doing all it can to ensure that the disease from entering the country but he told traders to be extra careful.

Ghana’s Ministry of Health has designated the Ridge Hospital and the Tema General Hospital both in the Greater Accra region as centres to manage possible cases of coronavirus in the country.

In a statement released by the Ministry, it said that this is part of the country’s plan to prevent and control any case that may be detected in the country and ultimately protect the Ghanaian population.

The Ministry explained that it has tightened the country’s emergency preparedness and response plan due to the rising number of infections from the novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in other countries of the world.

The statement said the Ministry has directed Regional Directors to designate treatment centres in their respective regions to deal with cases if they arise.

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