By Our Reporter
The Ministry of Trade, under the supervision of the Minister, Alan Kyeremanteng has awarded a 10-year sole sourced contract to Nick Danso’s Ghana Link Network Services Limited with its overseas partner, CUPIA Korea Customs Service.
The contract which was signed March 29, 2018 to provide a third Single Window (trade facilitation) and Customs Management System (UNIPASS) has sparked a growing unease among stakeholders and the business community at large.
These agitations have awakened as a result of the fact that there are already two existing companies, Customs World of Dubai (West Blue Consulting) and Ghana Community Network Services Limited GCNET operating single window at the ports.
The stakeholders are wondering what motivated the Ministry to sign such a contract if not for parochial interest and what the new company will be doing differently from the two others, especially when the vice president, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia had introduced the paperless port which is aimed at ensuring that all the stakeholders operating at the port integrate their systems to provide efficient service to traders and increase government revenue.
Shockingly the new contract which is expected to end on December 31, 2028 was signed without recourse to due process and competitive tendering.
There was also no stakeholder engagement or consultation prior to the awarding of the 10-year sole sourced third single window contract to Nick Danso’s Ghana Link.
Ghana Link and its overseas partner are going to earn 0.75 percent of proceeds at the port which is extremely higher than what the existing vendors are receiving.
Allowing the UNIPASS to operate a third single window at the port will be a duplication of function which is going to affect government’s revenue mobilization at the port.
The paper has it that the World Trade Organization (WTO) and World Customs Organization (WCO) are watching with keen interest the politics Ghana is playing with ports.
Ghana stands to lose respect in international trade community if another single window is allowed to operate at the ports.