Parliament’s select Committee on Trade, Industry, and Tourism has charged management of Ghana Link- operators of the Integrated Customs Management System, ICUMS to make improvement in revenue mobilization at the country’s ports a top priority.
Single window platform for trade facilitation, ICUMS replaced existing West Blue which had been operating at the country’s ports 2 years ago with some initial challenges.
Speaking to the media after a visit to head office of Ghana Link Network Services, chairman for the Committee on Trade, Industry and Tourism Carlos Ahenkora argued the resolution of all the initial challenges with the deployment of the system is a welcoming development.
He assured the company of support of the Committee to ensure smooth operations.
“During the commencement of ICUMS, we all know the kind of trouble and hullabaloo we all experience here in this country.
Fortunately a year or two onwards we have actually chalked marked increases in revenue collection and we keep on maximizing collection by virtue of the efficiency of the system.
I’m particularly amazed by the coverage this system has and considering the fact that today we don’t have any problems it is one single window system which move from end to end and that is what every country will look for.”
“From what I have seen today, for me I think even my colleagues on the other side of the divide are impressed.
What we are looking for right now is to ensure that anything that Ghana Link or by extension ICUMS needs to make it work efficiently if we can help, or we can assist we would run in and quickly come to their aid just to ensure that this system doesn’t fail. But by and large I would say that 99% we are good, ” he stated.
Ranking member for the Trades, Industry and Tourism Committee Emmanuel Kofi Armah Buah though expressed satisfaction of the briefing from management of the company disclosed the Committee will soon tour the Tema port to verify the effectiveness of the system.
“We were here to find out whether or not it has helped improved the system, whether or not the turn around time has improved, brought efficiency, whether or not it has helped increased government revenue which is really what is important.
I think we listened to the presentation, a very impressive presentation. We intend to follow up to the ports and talk to other stakeholders-importers and customs as part of this process we undertaking and so we wish Unipass well.”
“So far, from what they have told us, it sounds like they are making a lot of progress from where we started.
They were telling us they have now been able to introduce the system nationally which is progress and they continue to help work closely with customs to build capacity.
Those are very important but as I stated this is a work in progress and we intend to really verify the things they have told us if we’ve seen improvement in revenue that is really what we are looking forward to so we will would continue on that.”
Executive Chairman for Ghana Link Network Services, Nick Danso, expressed his excitement about the visit from the MPs.
According to him suggestions made have been noted and will be factored into consideration to ensure effective revenue mobilization. Mr. Danso disclosed revenue has increased by 24% since deployment of the ICUMS at the country’s ports.
“They also brought in new ideas and they have all been captured for consideration. So I’m impressed by the committee. We are doing well, we will continue going up and make sure we deliver a local system for Ghana. We have more than 500 workers here currently.
Commissioner of customs tells us the revenue has gone up about 24% and we are going to go up further. It’s all about getting a perfect system, end to end.” He stated.