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Business News of Thursday, 21 September 2017

Source: citibusinessnews.com

Investors to ditch Ghana over single window blues

Freight forwarders fear a dip in investor confidence with the takeover of the operations of West Blue Consulting Limited at the country’s ports.

They argue that the failure to efficiently manage the change could escalate the somewhat troubled single window system at the ports.

The development, the businesses also argue will eventually affect operations at the ports.

Dubai based firm, Customs World on Wednesday, September 20, 2017 completed the signing of the takeover agreement with West Blue Consulting Limited.

According to a statement on the agreement copied to Citi Business News, ‘the takeover by Ports and Customs World Ghana, will automate Customs, Free Zones and Port processes in Ghana and also build Ghana’s capacities through the application of technology and services that will mirror the operational model in Dubai.’

West Blue has been in charge with the provision of the National Single Window and Risk Management System at the country’s ports for about two years now.

But the President of the Ghana Institute of Freight Forwarders (GIFF), Kwabena Ofosu Appiah explains the move could greatly distort revenue mobilization for the government if not properly managed.

“I pray that the gate keepers pick this signal that the development is likely to affect investor confidence because they are better placed and they have all the intelligent factors on the ground. These kinds of cuffs and puffs do not augur well, the signals are a bit too hazy.”

“If we had found ourselves in the United States, I am sure the stock market would have given a clear indication as to how the numbers would have been reading by now… I am a bit handicapped as to how to capture the whole discussion. The mixed signals do not go down well for the kind of confidence that we want,” he added.

The coming onboard of West Blue Consulting in 2015, was met with stiff opposition particularly from the Destination Inspection Companies (DICs) that were mandated with Final Classification and Valuation.
The DICs among others also bemoaned the job losses that affected over 500 employees.