The Export sector of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) is a critical sector catering to the provision of goods and services aimed at creating the environment for much needed foreign exchange.
The export processing zones are part of wider efforts to boost industrial exports. The implementation of the National Single Window – a programme to automate and consolidate all trade processes – is a critical part of this and includes an e-payment system as well as a single paperless system for meeting documentation requirements.
The initiative should improve transparency, reduce irregularities and cut both time and costs of importing and exporting. Authorities began the second phase in 2015, which is integrating across the public and private sector entities. This is set to reduce the time and cost of trade by as much as 50% and lead to annual savings of more than USD 120 million.
The country recently concluded an interim economic partnership agreement with the EU that will improve access to that trading bloc. Ratified by Ghana in August 2016and by the EU Parliament in December 2016, the agreement will give Ghana-based companies duty-free and quota-free access to the EU market.
While this will be constrained by EU import standards, the economic partnership agreement provides an important opportunity to domestic exporters. Trade with the EU is worth €5.3 billion annually of which exports reached €2.3 billion in 2016.