The Bank of Ghana (BoG) has been commended for streamlining bottlenecks in exports and imports to shore up revenue for accelerated development.
The measures, among others, include the need to repatriate revenue through the establishment of Letters of Commitment (LoC) to mitigate the challenges of export revenue repatriation.
Addressing a forum for exporters and importers in Cape Coast, Ms. Benonita Bismarck, Managing Director of the Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA), said the lines of credit are aimed at securing the repatriation of export proceeds for allow the BoG to increase its foreign exchange reserves.
Discussions largely focused on LoC requirements for the repatriation of export earnings for importers, exporters, industry stakeholders and other developments in the dynamic shipping environment.
In addition, exports to major trading countries are the backbone of government revenue, therefore, the movement will be: “Monetary stability, job creation and industrialization effort”.
“This will strengthen the country’s foreign exchange reserves, support efforts to build resilience in the economy, and stabilize the national currency and overall macroeconomic stability.
She highlighted the importance of LoC requirements to ensure that all revenues are fully repatriated to the country through the banking system to ensure that exports and associated revenues are effectively tracked and their repatriation guaranteed.
Ms. Bismarck also mentioned some challenges in the implementation of the line of credit, including the insufficient time allocated for the repatriation of export earnings and the blocking of subsequent export transactions for non-repatriation of earnings beyond 60 days.
“Others are delays in accessing repatriated products from commercial banks, low exchange rates offered by banks, high commissions charged by commercial banks, and the unsuitability of the current form of LOC for cross-border trade. on a small scale”.
She noted that most of the problems faced by exporters stem from non-compliance and insufficient knowledge of the procedures involved, hence the collaboration between the two organizations to eliminate these bottlenecks.
Alhaji Musa Ali, former president of the Central Regional Imports and Exports Association, praised the GSA for enabling stakeholders to interact and stressed the need for compliance.
He, among others, raised concerns such as insufficient time allocated for repatriation of export proceeds and blocking of subsequent export transactions for non-repatriation of proceeds beyond three months.