Reduce duty fees, other charges to stabilize prices of goods – GUTA to govt

Reduce duty fees, other charges to stabilize prices of goods – GUTA to govt

Ghana Union of Trade’s Associations (GUTA) is urging policymakers in goods and services to reduce the cost of duty fees on goods, including shipping line charges, transportation costs, and utility tariff regimes.

The Association attributed the significant increase in goods in the country to these charges and urged policymakers to reconsider such fees in order to stabilize the prices of goods and services.

Recently, the Minister of Trade and Industry, K.T Hammond, expressed dissatisfaction with the increasing prices of goods in the market, with a particular emphasis on the price of cement.

In a press statement dated January 8, 2024, the Association clarified that it does not have control over pricing in a liberalized economy, as businesses have the autonomy to determine the prices of their goods and services.

The Association further notes that businesses do not derive pleasure from unpredictable price hikes and instead blames the surge in the costs of doing business in the country as the main factor behind the rising prices, emphasizing issues such as high tariffs, shipping fees, transportation costs, and utility tariff regimes as impacts on the final price of goods.

For this reason, GUTA stated that the minister should have engaged with cement producers to find out the reason for the increase before publicly criticizing the price hike.

GUTA added that any attempts to create monopolies or engage in unfair business practices will not be tolerated, and appropriate action will be taken against those engaging in such behaviour.

GUTA thus urge policymakers to address the issue of high costs and reduce unnecessary expenses to stabilize prices.

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