Prime News Ghana

Local businesses unable to break-even because of excessive taxes – GUTA Prez

By Michael Eli Dokosi
George Ofori
George Ofori
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The Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA) has decried high taxes local business owners have to pay to retrieve goods at the various ports.

The association members made their frustrations known when presidential nominee, Nana Akufo-Addo conferred with them at their head office.

President of the Association, George Ofori stated importers are compelled to pay anything between $55,000 to $100,000 to clear goods at the ports stressing exchange rates, inflation rates, processing fees and others are burdening local businesses.

He pointed out, Ghanaian local businessmen have been overburdened with charges, levies and taxes such that they virtually toil for commercial banks who enjoy off their backs adding the policy rate was unfavourable making it difficult for businesses to even break even.

Mr. Ofori also bemoaned the incursion of foreigners into Ghana’s retail trade sector noting high electricity tariffs have virtually reduced Ghanaian business people to third class citizens.

He noted his association has fought for reforms but successive governments have been insensitive to their plight.

According to Mr. Ofori, he had hoped that the country seeking foreign direct investment would lead to transfer of technology and injection of cash in the economy but rater such people enter the market space and engage in buying and selling activities competing with the locals while authorities look on.

Nana Addo for his part observed the price of crude oil and oil prices are low on the world market yet curiously enough Ghanaians are subjected to paying high fuel prices.

He explained even though he appreciates the automatic adjustment system, mismanagement has rendered the system ineffective adding Ghana’s weak currency and lax enforcement of policies has led to the tough times citizen and business were enduring.

He pledged his government will right the wrongs and ensure business growth which was evident in the Kufuor regime noting it was no magic rather the enabling of factors which made and will make banks chase potential clients to come for loans again.

Alan Kyeremanten was on hand to pledge, a Nana Addo regime will adhere to fiscal and monetary discipline and financial stability.