The Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA) has organised a seminar for members of the Chamber of Mines on the issue of demurrage and the need to harmonise various tariffs applicable to the mining industry in Accra.
The forum on ‘Harmonizing the Mining list, HS Code and Common External Tariffs (CET)’ and the ‘Avoidance of Demurrage’, was part of the authority’s sensitisation activities for key stakeholders in the shipping value chain.
Chief Executive Officer of GSA, Benonita Bismarck, addressing the participants, said: “The Ghana Shippers’ Authority is glad to be able to organize this seminar for the members of the Ghana Chamber of Mines as this forms part of the Authority’s work of engaging stakeholders and addressing current issues in the shipping industry which affect them in their international trade transactions.
Aside the introduction of the Common External Tariff (CET) in February 2016, we are also aware of the New HS Code which is posing some challenges with the use of the Mining List; there is the need for harmonization to ensure mining companies are not short-changed in the payment of duties.”
The shippers’ boss argued further that harmonizing the Mining List, the HS code and the CET is indeed a very critical one which requires a lot of deliberation so as to facilitate doing business in the mining sector which is key to our nation’s development.
The Chamber of Mines patterned the Authority since its inception, it has served and continues to serve on the Authority’s governing Board. The member companies of the Chamber produce over 90% of Ghana’s mineral output, making it an important sector of the country’s economy.
On the issue of demurrage, Ms. Bismarck encourage members of the chamber to put their act in place to ensure that they avoid paying huge amounts of money in demurrage, even though it is an avoidable cost in the shipping process.
“It will interest you to know that about 85% of containerized imports go on demurrage and storage rent, this is according to a study carried out by the Authority.
These staggering figures clearing indicate that there is the need for more awareness creation on the issue hence the need to draw your attention to ways in which these costs could be avoided to make your businesses more competitive,” she noted.
The forum pooled resource persons with rich expertise in their respective fields to discuss pertinent issues to enable participants make the right decisions in the interest of their businesses and for the overall development of the economy of Ghana.