Exporters in the Bono, Bono East and Ahafo Regions have been sensitized on the Bank of Ghana’s (BOG) Letter of Commitment (LOC) requirements for the repatriation of export proceeds at a Seminar organized by the Ghana Shippers? Authority, in collaboration with the BoG.
The seminar which took place at the Tyco City Hotel, Sunyani, on Tuesday, 9th August 2022 was the first in a series to be held across the country. This follows engagements between the GSA and the BoG after several complaints from exporters and some custom house agents regarding the implementation of the LoC since its introduction in 2016.
A cross section of participants at the workshop
The Chief Executive Officer of the GSA, Ms Benonita Bismarck, in her opening remarks observed that challenges with the implementation of the LoC included inadequate time allocated for the repatriation of export proceeds and blocking of subsequent export transactions for non-repatriation of proceeds beyond 60 days.
The others were delays in accessing repatriated proceeds from commercial banks. low exchange rates offered by the banks, high commissions charged by commercial banks, and the unsuitability of the current form of the LoC for small-scale cross border trade.
Commenting on the importance of the Seminar, she noted that most of the problems faced by exporters stemmed from non-compliance and inadequate knowledge of the procedures involved, hence the collaboration between the two (2) organisations to remove these bottlenecks.
Head of Shipper Services and Trade Facilitation Department of the GSA Mrs. Monica Josiah delivering the Opening Address on behalf of the CEO, Ms. Benonita Bismarck.
On his part, the Kumasi Branch Manager of the GSA. Mr. Isaac Tersiah Ackwerh noted that Non-Traditional Export (NTE) earnings for 2021 amounted to about USS 3.330 billion, which was an increase of 17% over the 2020 figure of US$ 2.846 billion. This clearly indicated the importance of the repatriation of export proceeds to the country, and therefore, the need to comply with Section 15 of the Foreign Exchange Act, 2006 (Act 723).
Head of Foreign Operations at the BoG, Mr Eric Hammond and Deputy Operations Manager at Ghana Link Network Services. in charge of ICUMS operations at the Tema Port. Mr Lipton Baffour Nsoah took participants through the Legal Framework of the LoC, the Transaction and Extension Regimes and the Technical details to educate them on the need and use of LoC. Participants were drawn from Export Companies and Exporter Associations, banks and other relevant stakeholder institutions.
Head of Foreign Operations at the BoG, Mr. Eric Hammond addressing participants
Source : GSA