Import duty reductions: Don’t get too excited – AGI

import duty AGI
CEO of Association of Ghana Industries, Seth Twum Akwaboah

The 50 and 30 percent reduction in import duties as announced by the Vice President Dr Mahamadu Bawumia, appears to have been misconstrued by the public.

Chief Executive Officer of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), Seth Twum Akwaboah, said the reduction in the benchmark value does not mean a reduction in duties.

He explained that the benchmark value which is used to calculate the value of goods, only comes into play when there is no clarity and uncertainty on the value of goods being declared.

“So if you are declaring a certain value and it is consistent with what the Customs experts [officials] then they leave it there and you pay the appropriate duty so it is not a reduction in duty. It is only when your declaration is not consistent with what Customs have and they say they are going to use a certain benchmark.”

This means that an importer’s value cannot be below this benchmark, he said adding “any value above it is fine but below that they will not accept it, that is what the benchmark value does.”

There was palpable excitement among many Ghanaians when the Vice President announced the 50 percent and 30 percent reduction in benchmark values on imports during his Town Hall meeting in Accra, Wednesday.

“To reduce the incidence of smuggling and enhance revenue, the benchmark or delivery values of imports have been reduced by 50 percent except for vehicles which will be reduced by 30 percent effective 4th April 2019,” Dr Bawumia said.

He added further “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 percent annually and increase custom revenue.”

Mahamudu Bawumia Town Hall 2019

Dr Bawumia announced the reduction on Wednesday at government’s Town Hall meeting

Some people jubilated at hearing this because they assumed that import prices were going to reduce, but that may not be the case.

Mr Akwaboah said there are very few instances where import duties will actually be slashed by 50 or 30 percent as people assume.

“In some instances, there may not be any reduction at all and in fact most of the goods we import – if it is consistent and they are declaring the right value – it [the import duty] should not be touched at all. So it will not necessarily result in the reduction in duty. It is not the same as 50 percent reduction in duty.

“It is only when there is uncertainty – the Customs are not clear that the values an importer has declared are consistent with what they think the value to be. In most cases, the value will stay the same so we shouldn’t be too excited that there is 50 percent reduction on import duties,” he added.

He further clarified that because of the Economic Community of West African States’ (ECOWAS) Common External Tariff (CET), it will be impossible for Ghana to effect a blanket reduction of import duties.

The CET is aimed at ensuring transparent customs procedures, reducing border delays and facilitating intra-regional trade.

“The CET has thresholds, in fact, it has tariff bands that are applicable, Ghana cannot change its own just like that. So it has to fall within the tariff bands…if you say 50 percent reduction in duties then it means that the tariff band which is for example 20 percent will be 10 percent and ECOWAS will not accept it,” Mr Akwaboah said.

For the AGI, a total reduction in import rates would have catastrophic effects on Ghanaian industries and that cannot be allowed.

credit: myjoyonline.com

Publish on Apt

Do you have any Social, informational, educational or entertaining stuff that should be featured on www.aptnewsghana.com?

Please submit your stories, pictures, and videos to us via WhatsApp: +233548388489 or click on the icon on your screen. Alternatively, email us: aptnewsghana@gmail.com

RSS APO Group – Africa-Newsroom: latest news releases related to Africa

  • Coronavirus: COVAX announces new agreement, plans for first deliveries January 22, 2021
    Download logoCOVAX announced the signing of an advance purchase agreement for up to 40 million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine; rollout to commence with successful execution of supply agreements; additionally, COVAX announced that, pending WHO emergency use listings, nearly 150 million doses of the AstraZeneca/Oxford candidate are anticipated to be available in Q1 2021, via […]
  • Coronavirus - Seychelles: India gifts Seychelles with COVISHIELD vaccines January 22, 2021
    Download logoThe Government of India has today gifted 50,000 doses of the COVISHIELD vaccine to Seychelles.  The consignment arrived this afternoon on a special Indian Navy Aircraft ‘Boeing P81’. The Indian High Commissioner to Seychelles, H.E. General Dalbir Singh Suhag, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Tourism, Mr. Sylvestre Radegonde, Minister for Health, Mrs. Peggy Vidot […]
  • Coronavirus - Namibia: COVID-19 Update 22 January 2021 January 22, 2021
    New cases 333 Deaths: 1 Recoveries: 341 Hospitalized cases: 193 (27 in ICU)Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Ministry of Health and Social Services, Namibia.Media filesDownload logo
  • Sierra Leone’s President Julius Maada Bio inspects Agricultural Machinery at the Agriculture Central Stores in Freetown January 22, 2021
     His Excellency President Dr Julius Maada Bio has embarked on an inspection tour of the stores of the Ministry of Agriculture that is housing about 2,410 agricultural implements and 410 tractors for the 2021 planting season. In the 2018 New Direction Manifesto of the SLPP, the President emphasised that the overall goal of their agricultural […]
  • Coronavirus - Uganda: COVID-19 update (22 January 2021) January 22, 2021
    Results of COVID-19 tests done on 21 January 2021 confirm 129 new cases. The cumulative confirmed cases are now 38,935. One COVID-19 death. The total COVID-19 deaths are 317.Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Ministry of Health - Republic of Uganda.Media filesDownload logo
  • Africa’s first ever Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) World Tour team, Team Qhubeka ASSOS, unveils iconic 2021 race jersey January 22, 2021
    Team Qhubeka ASSOS (www.TeamQhubeka.com), Africa’s only UCI-registered WorldTour professional cycling outfit, is thrilled to present our iconic 2021 race jersey. The unique ASSOS design was first presented to our riders earlier this week at a team training camp in Girona, Spain, ahead of what promises to be an exciting season. The vibrant elements of the […]
  • Coronavirus: African Union Member States reporting COVID-19 cases as of 22 January 2021, 9 am EAT January 22, 2021
    African Union Member States (55) reporting COVID-19 cases (3,365,095) deaths (82,891), and recoveries (2,822,123) by region: Central (83,170 cases; 1,561 deaths; 71,449 recoveries): Burundi (1,358; 2; 773), Cameroon (28,010; 455; 26,861), CAR (4,974; 63; 4,902), Chad (3,065; 114; 2,193), Congo (7,709; 114; 5,860), DRC (21,398; 644; 14,865), Equatorial Guinea (5,365; 86; 5,191), Gabon (10,120; 66; 9,809), […]
  • Online Trading: What to look for in a Broker January 22, 2021
    Download logoPublic participation in online trading has accelerated at unprecedented levels in 2020. This is the view of Dany Mawas, Regional Director at INFINOX (www.INFINOX.com), a leading CFD trading broker with international presence and market expertise, who explains that he, along with other heavyweights in the industry, Oakhaven Capital, believe that this trend comes as […]
  • Participation, education, digital access and climate change are key concerns for children and young people in Africa and Europe, U-Report poll finds January 22, 2021
    Download logoParticipation in decision-making, quality education, internet access and the climate crisis are among the main concerns for children and young people in Africa and Europe, according to U-Report polling data released today by UNICEF, the African Union (AU) and the European Union (EU). Almost half of all young people polled feel excluded from political […]
  • Grim milestone as Sahel violence displaces 2 million inside their countries January 22, 2021
    UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is calling for an end to the unrelenting violence in Africa’s Sahel which has now displaced more than two million people within the borders of their countries for the first time ever. The Sahel – which includes Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, and Niger — is home to some of the […]
About Editor 608 Articles
Joe Bright Nyarko Journalist/Communication Researcher. Environment & Sustainability Advocate. Managing Editor of aptnewsghana.com, a non-profit news portal with bias towards environment and sustainability issues, rural development policies and gender & inequality.