The Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has revealed that an initial assessment of the implementation of the paperless system at the Ghana’s ports showed a revenue increase of 56 percent.
The Vice President made this disclosure while speaking at the launch of the onboarding programme for National Service Personnel at the National Communications Authority (NCA).
According to him, revenue at the ports increased from GHc130 million recorded in the first week of September 2016, to GHc213 million in the same period for 2017.
“The results are amazing. We just looked at data this morning – first week of collections under the paperless system in September this year compared to last year first week of collections in September 2016, and collections have gone up by 56 percent; 56 percent from around GHc130 million to GHc213 million in one week,” he stated.
Meanwhile, Bawumia did not hesitate to expose the reason behind the impressive improvement.
Paperless System Blocked Revenue Leakages
Vice President Bawumia implied that Ghana ports did not necessarily experience an increase in port revenue, however, the various transaction loopholes through which government lost income at the country’s ports have reportedly been blocked by the paperless system.
Recall that one of the major objectives of the National Paperless Port Operations is to reduce human contact and interaction along the trade facilitation chain; a development that would in turn minimize corruption loopholes.
Making reference to the recent agitation against the paperless transactions, Dr. Bawumia said pointblank that the protests were meant to derail the policy due to the several media of revenue leakages it has blocked.
“On September 1, we launched the paperless [system], but of course not without attempts to actually derail the process, because it’s hurting a lot of people who were making free money, and people who used to take two weeks to clear a container after one day of delay were protesting. Are you protesting the system or something else?”
About The Paperless System
The Paperless Policy which is powered by the Ghana Community Network Service Limited (GCNET), is a single-window platform designed for processing trade transactions and customs clearances.
The policy which is officially known as the National Paperless Port Operations was introduced by the Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia to facilitate the clearing of goods at Ghana ports through the use of automation systems.
However, implementation of the paperless port clearing system which officially kicked-off on September 1, 2017, was greeted with challenges ranging from poor organization to inadequate education. A development which sparked protests among clearing agents at the Tema Port.
But from the Vice President’s claims, it is believed that solutions have been proffered to the various challenges, thereby making implementation of the new system possible.