GUTA Urges Government To Clamp Down On Foreigners Invading Ghana's Retail Space

GUTA Urges Government To Clamp Down On Foreigners Invading Ghana's Retail Space

  • The Ghana Union of Traders' Association (GUTA) has called on the government to be bold and clamp down on the invasion of Ghana's retail space by foreigners
  • He said the phenomenon has been stifling the work of local traders and manufacturers who cannot compete with imported subsidised goods
  • He also blamed the foreign traders for the country's depreciating currency

The Ghana Union of Traders’ Association (GUTA) has urged authorities to toughen up and clamp down on foreigners invading Ghana’s retail space.

GUTA said foreigners have taken advantage of the lax enforcement of the law and are taking over Ghana’s retail space by flooding the market with cheap products.

GUTA Urges Government To Clamp Down On Foreigners Invading Ghana's Retail Space
GUTA has urged the government to clamp down on foreigners invading the country's retail space. Source: Myjoyonline
Source: Original

Addressing the Customs, Controls and Regulations Forum organised by the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), the GUTA president, Joseph Obeng, said the flooding of Ghana’s retail space with imported subsidised goods is driving Ghanaian traders and manufacturers out of business.

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He said local traders and manufacturers are unable to compete with the subsidised goods these foreigners import from China and elsewhere.

Citing the Chinese's advance in Ghana’s retail market, he said Chinese-owned retail centres like China Mall and China Town have taken over 40% of the market and are impeding local manufacturers' efforts to increase production.

He said these importers dump their subsidised goods in Ghana and authorities have not been bold enough to stop them. This, he said, has reduced the market share of local traders to a mere 20%.

Joseph Obeng says foreign traders partly to blame for cedi’s free fall

The GUTA president also blamed the actions of the foreign traders for the cedi’s downslide on the foreign exchange market.

He said most of these foreign traders expatriate their earnings in foreign currencies thus putting excessive pressure on the cedi.

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He noted that most of them go to the black market and change forex there, leading to the underperformance of the cedi.

Ghana-Nigeria trade relations

YEN.com.gh reported that due to the ongoing tensions between Ghana and foreign traders, the Foreign Trade Committee of the Trade Department has taken on a new position as the sole authority with the power to close the shops of unlicensed traders.

Speaking to YEN.com.gh, Dr Joseph Obeng, president of the Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA), said it was the beginning of the end of the trade dispute between the two countries.

"Happily, the law has finally reached us Ghanaian retailers. That means, in this case, the retail committee will close stores, not GUTA," he said.

Meanwhile, Nigerian traders were frustrated and upset by this latest decision. Chukwumeka Nnaji, the president of Nigerian Traders Union in Ghana, expressed dissatisfaction with the proposal.

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"This is not right for Nigerians. So some have lost their documents and should be expelled from the market because of this? This decision is not right and we will inform our leaders in Nigeria," he told YEN.com.gh in an interview.

Proofread by Edwina N.K Quarcoo, journalist and copy editor at YEN.com.gh.

Source: YEN.com.gh

Authors:
Cornerlis Affre avatar

Cornerlis Affre (CA and Politics Editor) Cornerlis Kweku Affre is at present a Current Affairs Editor at Yen.com. He covers politics, business, and other current affairs. He has worked in various roles in the media space for at least 5 years. You can reach out to him at cornerlis.affre@yen.com.gh