…as pilot exercise reveals US$14.5m of under-declared goods
The Ghana Revenue Authority has touted numerous benefits which comes with the implementation of the Cargo Tracking Notes (CTN) policy.
The Commissioner General, Mr. Emmanuel Kofi Nti addressing the media in Accra to kick-start the official implementation of the module, enumerated several benefits which the policy will curb.
“At the piloting stage in July and August, the authority had detected that goods worth US$14.5 million have been under-declared at the ports,” he noted.
The benefits of the CTN module, he said, include reliable trade database, reliable and transparent data validation source, real time trade data and the reduction in port costs.
Mr. Nti maintained that a two-month piloting exercise for the module, between July and August, has revealed serious revenue leakages in the present Customs Verification of documents, Classification and Valuation.
“The module tackles undervaluation of shipment, concealment of higher rated products, deliberate misclassification of shipments by importers, manipulation of details of port of origin, volume/weight misrepresentation, over invoicing and several others,” the Commissioner General disclosed.
Meanwhile, Mr. Nti explained that the GRA had on several occasions granted hearing to key stakeholders affected by the policy’s implementation.
“The President had earlier directed the suspension of the policy to allow for broader stakeholder consultation with the GRA, which had been done,” he said.
Instructively, importers whose imports, from records, exceeding 36 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) per year will be required to obtain a CTN in the country of export.
Importers who bring in less than 36 TEUs (20 footer container) or 18 (40 footer container) per year, are exempted from CTN compliance.
Businesses that also import more than 36 TEUs, which is more than 36 pieces of 20-footer container or 18 (40-footer containers) per year, and can demonstrate that the nature of their imports and turnovers falls within small importer category, will be exempted.
Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Meanwhile, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, have added its voice to the debate with regards to numerous concerns from stakeholders.
The Chamber’s President, Dr. Nana Appiagyei Dankawoso I, explained that the GRA should have exhausted the last quarter of this year to do further stakeholder engagement on the policy.
Speaking at a press conference in Accra on Wednesday October 17, 2018, Nana Dankawoso asked, “why shouldn’t this policy be postponed till the beginning of next year to allow further stakeholder engagements. Why is the GRA so in a hurry?”.
By Wisdom Jonny-Nuekpe