Peg US dollar to cedi for duty payments at ports – GUTA to government

The Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA) has urged government to adopt the pegging of the US dollar to cedi for duty payments at the ports for at least a quarterly time frame.

The Union in a statement described the call as urgent to help mitigate the economic plight of the business community in Ghana.

GUTA explained that the Bank of Ghana’s weekly exchange rate quoted by the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) witnessed a sharp rise from GH¢8.2 to GH¢9.5, which has impacted the cost of duty to about 30 percent at the ports.

The Association further indicated the injection of $750 million Afreximbank loan into the economy has culminated in the US dollar heading toward the GH¢11 mark and therefore requires quick intervention to salvage businesses from an imminent collapse.

“Within a few days of injecting about $ 750m into the system, the dollar is heading to 11. This has brought a great deal of confusion, frustration and exasperation in the business sector, especially, in the importing community, as well as the consuming public”.

“To make matters worse, the Bank of Ghana (BoG) weekly exchange rate for Ghana Revenue Authority-Customs Division has also risen from 8.2 to 9.5, which happened overnight. The change has shot up duty charges to about 30 percent”, it stressed.

“This situation is unbearable and needs swift action from the government to save businesses. As a result, GUTA is calling on the Government to, as a matter of urgency, peg the dollar for the purpose of duty payments, at least quarterly, to mitigate the plight of the business community,” the statement added.

Read the full statement below:

PRESS STATEMENT ON THE ALARMING RATE OF THE DOLLAR TO THE CEDI

WHAT CAN WE DO AT THIS POINT?

TRADERS ASK, AS THE CEDI IS ABOUT ELEVEN (11) GHANA CEDIS TO THE DOLLAR


Within a few days of injecting about US $ 750m into the system, the dollar is heading to eleven Ghana cedis (Gh11). This has brought a great deal of confusion, frustration and exasperation in the business sector, especially, in the importing community, as well as the consuming public.

To make matters worse, the Bank of Ghana (BOG) weekly exchange rate for Ghana Revenue Authority-Customs Division has also risen from 8.2 Ghana Cedis to 9.5 Ghana Cedis, which happened overnight. The change has shot up duty charges to about 30%.

This situation is unbearable and needs swift action from the Government to save businesses. As a result, GUTA is calling on the Government to, as a matter of urgency, peg the dollar for the purpose of duty payments, at least quarterly, to mitigate the plight of the business community.

At this stage, it is becoming extremely difficult to service our bills, as well as pay our duty.

The question here is, what can we do at this point in time to continue to be in business?

In view of this hard situation, we find ourselves in, we would like to humbly appeal to the relative institutions particularly Bank of Ghana and the Ministry of finance, that came before the Joint Committee set up by the Office of the Council of State to expedite the necessary action for prompt response.

We are also by this release reminding government that depleting funds without being replenished is the number one cause of business failure.

Dr. Joseph Obeng
President of GUTA

Source: GHWweb

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