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Business News of Tuesday, 14 August 2018


Government targets top 100 in world rankings; top 5 in Africa on 'ease of doing business'

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Government has expressed optimism that the policies it is implementing across various aspects of the Ghanaian economy will eventually result in an improvement of its rankings on the globally.

Government stated that it's policies such as the paperless ports system and it claims has reduced the duration spent at the ports, and the setting up of a committee to review various policies and systems that hitherto made doing business in the country frustrating, can influence it's ranking.

The country in the last World Bank Ease of Doing Business Ranking, dropped twelve places from the 108th position in 2016 to the 120th position in 2017.

But this position was fiercely contested by a Director, Multilateral Trade at the Trade and Industry Ministry Anthony Nyame-Baafi who argued that the report doesn't represent in any way the current status of the country.

Anthony Nyame-Baafi explained the 2017 ranking largely took into account the situation as existed in 2016 and the first quarter of 2017 and argued that considering the reforms that have been implemented since then, Ghana will move up the ranking in the next 'ease of doing business' report that will be released next year.

"If you actually want to look at the effect of what the present government has done in terms of improving the ease of business that will go into this ranking then it will reflect in the 2018 rankings. For that particular one you will find out that it will cover the three-quarters of 2017 and first quarter of 2018. We are targeting that next year or from the 2018 rankings ghana will be among the top 100. We will not retrogress but rather start improving and then maybe hit 58 and keep improving. If you narrow it to the African countries as I said we may be among the top 5" he disclosed.

Anthony Nyame-Baafi who doubles as Chairman of National Committee on Trade Facilitation explained that the Ministry and for that matter, the government isn't only focused on improving ease of doing business but performing a holistic review of all indicators to make Ghana a business-friendly country.

The Director in charge of Multilateral Trade was speaking on the sidelines of a forum organised by GIZ, Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation, Ministry of Trade and Industry and the Ghana International Chamber of Commerce on the theme, "The role of Ghana's private sector in the Implementation of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement" at the Alisa Hotel in Accra.

He expressed the government's intention to ensure and maintain the timing for clearing goods at the ports at 4hours an improvement of the 48hours set by the WTO Agreement.

"We are looking at a holistic picture and that one will enable business have confidence in the other things we are working on. As they said you go into the cross-border trade to ensure that you streamline that process to its minimum and then this four hours time you spend to clear goods at the ports because of the paperless thing will become sustainable and now also with assistance, we are training Customs, MDAs and FDA on some risk management systems"

Ghana is the 106th signatory to the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement.

The WTO Trade Agreement was entered into on 22nd February 2017 following its ratification by two-thirds of the WTO membership after it was developed in December 2013.

The TFA contains provisions for expediting the movement, release and clearance of goods, including goods in transit.

It also sets out measures for effective cooperation between customs and other appropriate authorities on trade facilitation and customs compliance issues.

It further contains provisions for technical assistance and capacity building in this area.

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