The Minister for Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah has held a meeting with the executives of the Kantomanto Used Clothes Dealers Association including the Chief Executive officer of Joy4fame Group of companies, John Obiri Yeboah, to discuss ways of supporting them to grow their business.
The meeting which was arranged by John Obiri Yeboah, PRO for the Association, was for the Minister to acquaint himself with the challenges they face in their businesses as regards importation of goods and clearance from the port.
Many issues were raised in that meeting.
According to them, import taxes have become an issue and a burden on their businesses. This, they indicated, is leading to the collapse of some of their businesses since taxes have become unbearable coupled with less demand for their goods.
They intimated that business is not like previously, as currently sales are low and that becomes a factor when they consider the taxes they have to pay.
According to John Obiri Yeboah, the services of middle men or agents is a contributing factor to the rise in their fees.
He explained to his colleagues that government has put measures in place to make clearing of goods easier and simple but most importers continue to engage agents who most at times, shoot up fees paid at the ports.
He suggested that there should be a unique means of clearing and moving goods through the Tema Port into the country’s main market Centre, including Kantomanto, Tudu, Timber market Okaishie and Kaneshie.
He said Joy4fame, which is a Shipping Company Limited was established to lessen the burden traders go through regarding cleaning of their goods from the port, and urged members to take the opportunity to engage the company in that regard.
The Minister who listened to the plights of the traders, promised to send their messages and grievances cross to the appropriate quarters for solution.
He, however, explained to the traders how the system works at the port and the paperless port system and appealed to them to stop trading with fake agents.
According to him, there has been proliferation of fake agents at the ports and many people especially traders are falling prey to them thereby making them lose huge sums of money in their dealings with them, adding that it is the same traders that continue to engage the agents, hence advised them against that practice.
He said although government is working to help their businesses grow, the traders themselves must also take charge of some opportunities that are being created by the private sector, such as Joy4fame which is a credible company, and work with them in the clearing of their goods.
He lauded Joy4fame operations and pledged his support for the traders.