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Import duties at Ghanaian ports reduced by 50 per cent, this will be effective from April 4, 2019

The government of Ghana has disclosed that it will reduce the cost of importing products by 50 per cent in the country.

Dr Mahamudu Bawumia

It will as well reduce the cost of importing vehicles by 30 per cent.

The Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia made the revelation on Wednesday, April 3, 2019, at the maiden Town Hall Meeting while addressing the general public on the state of the economy in two years since his party, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) took office.

The Vice President said the reduction will take effect from Thursday, April 4, 2019.

He said that the move is to ensure an increase in the volume of imports through the Ghanaian ports rather than importing in other neighbouring countries.

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He said, “To reduce the incidence of smuggling, the benchmark volume of imports will be reduced by 50 per cent. However, for vehicles, the reduction will be 30 per cent. This will be effective from tomorrow. We are doing this because we expect that we will see higher volumes coming into Ghana and that we get higher revenue

According to him, some findings from his team, the Economic Management Team (EMT) shows that traffic at the Lome harbour has increased by some 300 per cent between 2013 and 2018 while Ghana saw just a little over 4 per cent increment within the same period.

This according to Dr Bawumia is because the neighbouring country’s import duty is less expensive, the reason for the huge number of importations through their ports.

Recently the Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA), said that Ghana charges the highest import duties on goods brought into the country within the Sub-Saharan region.

Comparing the cost of importation to that of the neighbouring countries, Ghanaian importers preferred importing goods from other ports that were neighbours to Ghana rather than their own because it is cheaper than importing directly into Ghana.

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Ghana will then according to the Vice President implement the reduction on ports charges to enhance productivity.

“Many port charges are a percentage of the value of the goods and this makes them exorbitant and highly justifiable. Why should the cost of scanning a container, a vehicle examination fee, a network charge be a percentage of the value of goods in the container?”

"We will reduce these charges by 50 per cent and this will take effect from tomorrow, April 4,” he added.

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