Traders in the country have expressed worry at the difficulties in clearing goods at the ports as a result of the many challenges associated with the newly introduced paperless Port clearing system.
According to them government should have piloted the system to evaluate it’s feasibility, time, cost, adverse events, and statistical variability to predict an appropriate sample size and improve upon the study for full scale implementation.
Protocol Officer of the Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA), Richard Amamoo told Otec Fm that traders are not against the system but expected the introduction of the paperless system to curtail all the challenges in the old system of clearing goods at the port.
”If you introduce a new system and it fails to tackle the various challenges in the old system, then it means the new one has been for nothing,” he noted.
Mr Amamoo claims the union anticipated all these challenges and advised government to pilot the process, and use the desirable and undesirable outcomes to create a perfect system for full scale implementation but government declined and went full scale.
”They said the system would ensure that goods were cleared from the ports within 4 hours but as we speak, that is not happening. It takes more than 3 days to get goods out of the port,” he revealed.
This, he explained is creating mistrust between agents and their clients who have been made to believe that goods are cleared within 4hours at the port.
Mr Amamoo also described the system as a revenue mobilization project which is not in the interest of traders because they have received several complaints from their members that the cost of duty has been increased with the system’s introduction.
He stated that the system laudable but has shifted focus from the ordinary trader who is already burdened by the cost of doing business in this country.
”We should perfect the system to make it transparent so that government and traders can both benefit and not create a one sided situation where government only thinks about raking in more revenue,” he concluded.