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Single Window To Reduce Cost By 25%---Trade Minister

The Trade and Industry Minister, Alan Kwadwo Kyeremateng, has indicated that importers and exporters will experience a full reduction of administrative charges at the port by 25percent under the implementation of the Single Window.

The Sector Minister said Government is expected to achieve an overall reduction in the administrative time and cost of trading internationally by 50percent and 25percent respectively in the next three years under the National Single Window project.

He indicated that the introduction of the Ghana National Single Window will reduce the time and cost of trading across borders and ensures predictability in delivering goods to markets to enhance global trade.

The Sector Minister said this at a National Single Window Conference under the theme, “Singe Window and the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement- Key Tool for Trade Development” organized by Westblue Consulting and International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) in Accra.

Mr. Kyeremateng added noted that the project is increasing global competitiveness of local businesses with ease, promotes transparency and enhances government revenue mobilization through increased compliance and enhanced economic performance.

According to the Trade and Industry Minister, Ghana will derive the full potential of the National Single Window system with the entry into force of the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement which Ghana is an original signatory.

He said the WTO estimated that the agreement will generate over 1 trillion US dollars in benefits annually with majority being accrued to developing countries including Ghana as the paragon.

Mr. Alan Kyeremateng posited that Government will fully capitalize on this opportunity and redouble its efforts in export development and use the advent of the WTO Agreement to develop new market opportunities and support programmes for Ghanaian traders.

The Sector Minister emphasized that Single Window is enshrined in the Trade Facilitation Agreement and will help implement many of the measures in the agreement through the simplification of trade procedures, the provision of trade related information, the enhancement of cooperation between related government agencies and the implementation of international standards.

He indicated that Government will eliminate all unnecessary processes, simplify and harmonize the rest and deliver a fully integrated and automated all-of-government service to their partners in economic development.

A statement by the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori Atta indicated that as the office overseeing the programme implementation, he sees no room for backtracking on this approach which is considered as an excellent example of best practice in trade facilitation globally with significant progress achieved in our related international business rankings.

He called on all government officials in the various ministries to fully support the effort of our trading community to do their business efficiently and profitably.

The sector minister also call on trading community to fully embrace this new transparency and compliance level developed through the introduction of electronic declarations and payments for trade.

The Managing Director of West Blue Consulting, Valentina Mintah indicated that the Single Window is a key tool for implementing the WTO Agreement as it has a major impact on simplifying trade procedures and facilitating Border Agency Coordination.

She added touching on 14 Articles of the Agreement, they plan to embrace it fully both in the letter and the spirit to go far beyond its requirements in making Ghana a leading trading nation in the region and globally.

According to her, December 2015 marked the beginning of the work to implement the Ghana National Single Window Programme.

Madam, who is also a member of ICC, stated that tremendous progress has been made since that time in significantly reducing the time and cost of doing business in Ghana and making trade easier.


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