GEPA sensitizing programme yielding results
Data from the Trade Division of Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) indicates that the incorrect outturns resulting from inaccurate export data from freight forwarders has considerably reduced in recent months.
This follows a series of sensitization programmes being spearheaded by the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA) aimed at sensitizing Freight Forwarders on the need to ensure accurate transmission of export data to harmonize trade statistics.
“Following the sensitization programme held at Aflao, the sector Commander of Customs – GRA [Ghana Revenue Authority] has stopped the application of manual export declaration”, a speech read on behalf of GEPA Chief Executive Officer, Madam Afua Asabea Asare said.
The event was the seventh in the series of sensitization programmes which has become necessary due to the continuous input of inaccurate export data on export forms which has resulted in the capture of wrong data with values far lower or far above the actual.
During recent visits by GEPA officials to some customs exit points aimed at gathering and taking delivery of manually completed and duly assessed exports forms for 2018, the authority observed that a pile of forms received from a freight forwarder dating back to 2013, 2015 and 2017 had such inaccuracies.
The authority is mandated by law to develop and promote exports and it reiterated its full commitment to ensuring data integrity through the protection and transmission of accurate export data declaration.
It is in this respect that the authority is fully committed to ensuring that data declared by exporters reflect the actual volumes and values traded.
Speaking to the Goldstreet Business, Director of Research at GEPA, Mr. Maxwell Kusi said wrong application of the Harmonized Commodity Description Coding System (HS Codes), wrong application of values and the practice of lumping similar products together by given them one HS code is creating problems in the Authority’s efforts towards having accurate export data.
“There can be difference between pineapple juice, pineapple concentrate and fresh pineapple. If different HS codes are not given to each product, we cannot harmonize the trade system and procedures”, he said.
The Harmonized Commodity Description Coding System is the common worldwide standard for describing the type of commodity set for export.
In attendance were the representatives from GSS, Bank of Ghana (BoG), Ghana Institute of Freight Forwarders (GIFF), Customs Service and GC Net.