Ghana and the European Union (EU) has started the implementation of the Interim Economic Partnership Agreement (IEPA) effective July 1, 2021.
Trading under the agreement reaffirmed the deep interest for both Ghana and the EU to strengthen their long-standing trade and economic relationship.
It also underscores the shared ambition to enhance relations between the EU and the Economic Community of West African States and the African States as well.
This was announced in a statement by Mr Valdis Dombrovskis, the Executive Vice-President and Commissioner for Trade of the European Union, and Mr Alan Kyeremanten, the Minister for Trade and Industry of Ghana and copied to the Ghana News Agency in Accra.
The statement said since December 2016 the IEPA guaranteed duty-free quota-free access to the EU market for products made in Ghana and as of today, Ghana starts liberalising access to its market for 80 per cent of the total volume of EU exports.
This is crucial, the statement said, for developing and diversification of Ghana’s bilateral trade.
It will also create better opportunities for EU companies to trade and invest in Ghana and produce goods for export to the wider African market under the preferences available under the African Continental Free Trade Area.
The statement said the removal of tariffs on intermediary goods and machinery from the EU under the IEPA would mean cheaper inputs for Ghanaian production.
“This will make locally produced goods more competitive and support industrial development in Ghana and the country’s integration into global ‘value chains”, it said.
It said the trade-related development cooperation under the IFPA would facilitate reforms of the fiscal revenue system, improve the business environment and promote the upgrading of the productive sectors in Ghana.
Although the IEPA was concluded in December 2007 and ratified by Ghana in 2016, the implementation of the tariff liberalisation schedule was delayed under technical adjustments agreed between the EU and Ghana.
It said the necessary rules of origin documents to be used for trading, including the certificates of origin and origin declaration had now been developed and the codes and systems were in place for the start of the effective implementation of tariff cuts for EU products entering Ghana.