Officials from Customs in Ghana and around the world have been urged to focus on creating secured business environment for economic development in national and international economies.
Speaking at a just ended International Customs Day Celebration marked in Ghana, A Deputy Minister of Finance, Kwaku Kwarteng said customs should seize opportunity of the celebrations to reflect on riding economies of impediments like corruption, reduce clearance time at borders and removing barriers to trade.
“International best practices should be applied in examination of goods while outlining modern technology and moving away from intrusive to non-intrusive examination with the introduction of post-clearance auditing and risk management mechanisms,” he stated.
The Commissioner General of the Ghana Revenue Authority, Emmanuel Kofi Nti added that, the day offers customs, opportunity to take stock and plan how they can impact economies going into the future.
“It is my hope that you would focus on the role you play as customs officers and how it creates a secure business environment for economic development,” he said.
Commissioner of Ghana Customs, Isaac Crentsil in a speech on behalf of Kunio Mikuriya, Secretary General of World Customs Organisation, urged members of the service to enable businesses thrive by stabilizing and streamlining procedures, tackling corruption, enhancing integrity and facilitating cross border movement of goods.
“Combating cross border crime including the illicit funding of international terrorism through trade activities is our responsibility and one that custom take seriously in its efforts to secure a safe environment,” he said.
Director of Tema Port, Edward Osei lauded efforts by Customs in facilitating trade in Ghana.
“At GPHA we are not only making sure that goods bound for Ghana comes to Ghana, but also goods that are going into our neighbouring countries like Togo, Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso all come through Tema Port, and from there go to the various countries. When we do that, obviously, more revenue accrue to the Government of Ghana,” he said.
Other service providers pledged their support to Customs to promote effective trade in Ghana and around the world.
The Managing Director of GCNet, Alwin Hoegerle pledged the Ghana Community Network Service’s support and collaboration to roll out new innovative solutions to modernise the processes of customs.
“GCNet remains commitment to deepening this partnership with GRA especially the Customs Division to foster a business environment which is secure,” he said.
Technical Advisor to CEO of West Blue Consulting, Kingsley Abayie called for a strong collaboration between customs and its stakeholders to achieve a secured trade environment.
“We pledge our total support to all developmental plans, actions and strategies adopted by Government of Ghana and its agencies to make us build a secure business environment,” he said.
Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, Ghana Shippers Authority, stakeholders and customs officers who immensely contributed to the work of Customs to obtain impressive results in growing the economy were awarded certificates from World Customs Organisation.