Business News of 2014-08-08

Customs to review export at Tema Harbour

The Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has set up a four-member committee to review the export procedures at the Tema Harbour.
The committee, which has 10 days to present its report, has also been mandated to investigate and identify weaknesses in the monitoring and documentation of exports.
The committee members are Mr Kwesi Ahiakpor, Chief Revenue Officer in charge of Preventives; Mr Mark Tchorly, Chief Revenue Officer for Warehousing; Ms Patricia Coffie, Chief Revenue Officer for Export and Mr Jacob Hayford, Senior Revenue Officer for the International Standardisation Organisation (ISO) compliance.
According to the Commissioner of Customs, Mr Wallace Akondor, the committee will also appraise export procedures to determine possible loopholes in the entire process.
The committee has also been mandated to determine whether goods under export are in compliance with international trade, safety and security policies.
Speaking to the Daily Graphic in Tema, Mr Akondor said the review of the process was part of the division's assurance check strategies instituted to address weaknesses in the division's operations.
"The recent detention of banned ferrous scrap metals being smuggled out of the country is a major determinant for this review process, so as to inform the division of the control measures to avoid recurrence," Mr Akondor indicated.
Shipping Lines
Mr Akondor said he was worried that although shipping lines operating in the port were aware of the ban on selected products for export, they were still aiding cargo owners to engage in such illegalities.
"Once products or items have been banned, aiding exporters becomes an illegality," the commissioner emphasised.
He warned that the division would ensure that the laws of the country were followed and shipping lines would not be allowed to condone and perpetrate such criminality against the state.
He also warned officials of the division who were aiding perpetrators to flout the laid down procedures and regulations.
"We would ruthlessly deal with any officer caught encouraging and promoting activities that contravene our regulations," Mr Akondor warned.
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