Ghana shelves law banning importation of salvaged cars

GHANA – The Government of Ghana has suspended the implementation of the law that bans the importation of salvaged vehicles and those older than 10 years into the country.

This was revealed by the Tema Regional Chairman of the Ghana Institute of Freight Forwarders (GIFF), Alex Asiamah, in an interview with a local media house, Citi News.

Mr. Alex Asiamah explained that the  that the suspension was announced by Ghana’s Customs Commander at the Tema Port.

Mr Asiamah said Ghana’s customs will continue to do their normal clearance of vehicles which had earlier been earmarked for denial of entry.

He urged importers of such vehicles to go on with their business of importing such cars as the Ministry of Finance had not yet okayed the ban which was scheduled to take effect on 1st November this year.

The law outlawing the importation of salvaged cars and those older than 10 years was passed by Ghana’s parliament in August this year.

Used cars comprise 70% of Ghana’s car market with a majority of these cars being salvaged cars imported mainly from the United States.

According to Globenewswire most of the used cars arriving in Ghana have obsolete technology whose carbon dioxide emissions (CO2) and fuel consumption might no longer be compliant with the manufacturer’s standards imposed in developed countries, and therefore, is a threat to Ghana’s environment.

The harmful impact of used cars on the environment and its threat on Ghana’s nascent new car industry prompted the administration of President Akufo-Addo to formulate a legislation to minimize their proliferation in the country.

The law was also aimed at encouraging vehicle manufacturers such as Volkswagen, Nissan, Toyota Motor Corp., Suzuki Motor Corp. and Renault SA to push ahead with plans of setting up local assembly of vehicles.

The law was however met with a lot of resistance from used-cars automotive dealers in Ghana who argued that the law would deny them of their daily livelihoods and render them jobless.

Reports also indicated that import restrictions on salvaged cars could cost the government as much as $143 million in customs revenue in the first three years after implementation.

Its postponement serves as a reprieve to Ghanaian used car dealers who complained of not having enough time to comply with the requirements of the new law.

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