Public and private institutions have benefitted from a training programme by Compete Ghana on the customs imports procedures and trade facilitation under the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) between Ghana and the European Union (EU).
Participants were sensitised on the Tariff and Non-Tariff Measures (NTMs), Rules of Origin and the Private Sector, Tariff Classification, and Customs Valuation.
Tariffs refer to taxes levied on imports of goods or products into a country, to level the price against locally produced similar goods and raise revenue.
The training focused on the critical aspects of import facilitation and import trade policy tools, which could be used by Ghana and EU to support the implementation of the EPA.
The programme, organised by the EU-funded Compete Ghana, in partnership with the Ministry of Trade and Industry, forms part of 10 training modules earmarked to ensure a smooth implementation of the EPA to enhance export to the EU.
Mr. Nicolas Gebara, the Team Lead of Compete Ghana, said the module would ensure stakeholders’ understanding of the key roles and responsibilities in the implementation of the EPA.
“We are trying to simplify things for the importers who will be increasingly importing products from the EU for processing…”
While the tariffs for exporting to the EU were removed at once since December 2016, tariffs on imports to Ghana followed liberalisation schedule, which started in 2021, and would decrease for 80 per cent of products over a ten-year period, he said.
Responses from the private sector had been positive and engaging, Mr Gebara said, hence the need for coordination and guidance by key public institutions to assist exporters and importers under the EPA.
Mr. Dodi Seidu, a trainer in Trade Facilitation, said participants needed to understand the policy tools available to them and how to implement the NTM policy tools.
They were also expected to understand and analyse the NTMs implemented by other countries, including the EU, to be able to respond appropriately in addressing challenges, which may result from such measures.
Mr. Raffaele quarto, Trade Counselor, EU Delegation to Ghana, said the Ghana-EU partnership was very important to boost trade between the two countries and urged participants to take advantage of the exposure to improve their work.
Mr. Ibrahim Bawumia, Planning, Research, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer, Ghana International Trade Centre, on behalf of the participants, assured the organisers of their readiness to use the knowledge gained to make an impact in the Ghanaian economy.
The participants included the Ghana Revenue Authority, Ghana International Trade Centre, Shippers Authority, Export Promotion Authority, and Commodity Exchange.
Others were the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Association of Ghana Industries, Food and Drugs Authority, Ghana Standards Authority, Free Zones Authority and Plant Protection and Regulatory Services Directorate.