Management of West Blue Consulting, the company responsible for implementing the Ghana National Single Window programme at Ghana’s ports has disclosed to Citi Business News that the project has reduced long hours spent in importing and exporting goods.
The programme, which is currently in its second phase was initiated by government in September 2015 to take over the responsibility for Import Classification and Valuation from Destination Inspection Companies.
Developed under the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe, the Single Window Concept is aimed at harmonizing and standardizing international trade procedures to enhance trade among governments.
Speaking to the Citi Business News, at the launch of the second phase, the Chief Executive Officer of West Blue Consult, Valentina Mintah stated that the programme has brought relief to exporters and importers by removing bottlenecks that existed in the past.
“What we are doing is reduction of time and cost of doing business, as well as efficient revenue collection and safety of goods coming in,” she said.
Madam Mintah disclosed that, it previously took up to two weeks for the Final Classification and Valuation Report (FCVR) which was issued by the Destination Inspection Companies (DICs) to be released but the situation is now different.
“Now customs is issuing the Customs Classification and Valuation Report (CCVR) which is the replacement; and the service level agreement they have is 48 hours, so within two days complaints CCVRs are issued and in some case even within two hours,” she said.
Even though no assessment has been done to determine if the new programme is responsible for increased the revenue recorded by the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) in 2015, Madam Mintah was of the view that the transformation has had positive results for the country’s revenue mobilization.
“In 2015, the customs and GRA exceeded their revenue targets, though no review has been undertaken to determine the direct effect from the Single Window, the two previous years showed that ,they could not meet the target,” she said.
Touching on the second phase of the programme, Madam Mintah was optimistic the valuation processes will increase the successes of the programme. “We now have the strategic action plan and roadmap.
So for now we look at the milestone and the deliverables to enable us achieve the vision of the National Single Window,” she said. She assured that the third phase of the project, which will be the final phase, will increase the efficiency of the programme upon completion.