Export procedures in Ghana are quite simple and straightforward. First, an exporter needs to have registered his or her business with the Registrar-General’s Department and the Ghana Export Promotion Authority. These different types of registration accord respective registration numbers for business and for export.
Export procedures are grouped into two main categories - traditional exports and non-traditional exports. The traditional exports comprise: cocoa beans, minerals and ore, electricity, logs and lumber, unprocessed gold, fresh fish, and fresh yam. All other commodities are considered as non-traditional exports.
Procedure for Traditional Exports
- Completion of the Bank of Ghana Exchange Control Form A2 which can be obtained from all retail banks;
- Declaration of export goods and submission of declaration to the Customs, Excise and Preventive Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority through the GC-Net/GCMS. In instances where electronic submission is not possible, declaration of goods would have to be done on the ASYCUDA forms. Submission of the Declaration has to be accompanied by all required permits/certificates
- Validation of the Declaration is done by Customs against presented goods and upon satisfactory validation, goods are released for exports.
Procedure for Non-Traditional Exports
- The procedures are similar to the above, except that in customs exit points where the GCNet/GCMS is not operational, Ghana Customs Non-Traditional Export Forms would have to be completed and presented to Customs for validation in respect of non-traditional exports.
Export duty is paid in Ghana on the export of cocoa beans, hydrocarbon oil and Aviation Fuel.
Permits/Certificates are also required in respect of the following export items:
- Cocoa beans-Fumigation and Quality Assurance by the Control Division of Ghana Cocoa Board;
- Timber, Sawn timber Wood products – Permit by the Forestry Commission of Ghana
- Mineral Ore –Permit by the Minerals Commission of Ghana
- Manufactured/ Processed Goods –Certification by the Ghana Standards Authourity
- Fresh/ Processed Fish- Quality Assurance Certification by the Ghana Standards Authourity
- Coffee, Shea-nuts & Cashew nuts-Quality Assurance Certification by the Control Division of the Ghana Cocoa Board
- Food/Agriculture products- Phyto-sanitary Certification
- Rock & Rock samples -Certification by the Geological Survey Department of Ghana
- Wildlife -Permit from the Department of Game and Wildlife of Ghana
- Pets – Permit of the Veterinary Service of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture
- Chemicals –Certification from the Environmental Protection Agency of Ghana
- Pharmaceuticals- Permit/ Certificate from the Ministry of Health and the Food & Drugs Authourity of Ghana
- Antiques- Permit of the Ghana Museums and Monuments Board
- Human Remains- Certificate from the Births and Deaths Registry of Ghana
Under the export laws of Ghana, narcotics, parrots, round logs-12 species, rattan canes and bamboo, obscene material and other prohibited goods are prohibited export items.
Exporters who wish to avail themselves of preferential market access would need to complete documents to satisfy certificate of origin concerns for the following markets:
- European Union – EURI
- USA, Japan, Canada, Switzerland, etc – GSP
- USA – AGOA Visa
- ECOWAS countries – ETLS
Export Incentive Schemes
The Ghana Export Promotion Authourty, in close collaboration with the Ministry of Trade and Industry, plays a leading role in the establishment of incentive schemes for exporters, some of which are:
- An Export Proceeds Retention Scheme in operation allows exporters to exchange all (i.e.100%) foreign exchange proceeds from non-traditional exports into cedis at very competitive rates negotiated with the exporter’s banker or to keep the revenue receipts in forex accounts;
- A Corporate Tax Rebate, which allows any manufacturer or any person engaged in agricultural production, exporting part or all of his production, to claim tax rebate between 40% and 75% of his tax liability;
- A Customs Duty Drawback that allows exporters to draw back up to 100% of duties paid on material imported to produce goods for export;
- A Bonded Warehousing that allows manufacturers to seek Customs license to hold imported raw materials intended for manufacturing for export in secures places without payment of duty; and
- Up-Front Duty Exemption, which operates alongside the duty drawback system, enables exporters to enjoy 100% duty exemption on imports intended to go into production for export.