Dr. Gideon Boako, spokesperson for Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, has explained that the reduction in the benchmark import values at Ghana’s ports by 50%, is significant, and will yield long term returns.
He indicated that the move will not make Ghana a dumping ground for goods but rather boost local trade.
The Vice President announced a 50 percent reduction in the benchmark import values for all goods, and 30% for cars at a town hall meeting held on Wednesday.
Some Ghanaians have questioned the impact of the reduction on government’s revenue drive and local businesses.
Some have even suggested that the move will turn Ghana into a dumping site for imported products.
But Dr. Boako told Citi News the decision is in the best interest of Ghanaians.
“In 2013 to 2018, the volumes of containers that passed through the ports increased by 300% and Tema Port by 4%. It means that if you look at the volumes of goods that are on the market today, they are not coming through Tema. They are coming through unapproved routes. By reducing this, they will pass through the Tema Ports. Ghanaians have been wailing and complaining about import duties.
“If you are a good government you need to give them a hearing and say that yes I have listened to your concerns. Lessen the burden of the Ghanaian today. The future will take care of itself.”
The Vice President at the town hall meeting said: “To reduce the incidence of smuggling and enhance revenue, the benchmark delivery values of import will be reduced by 50%. However, for vehicles, the reduction will be 30 percent.”
The town hall meeting was aimed at briefing Ghanaians on developments in Ghana.
The meeting comes at a time the Ghanaian cedi is having some stability troubles after its exit from the extended IMF credit programme.