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Importers and Exporters raise concerns over influx of smuggled wheat flour

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The Importers and Exporters Association has called on regulatory agencies to clamp down on alleged smuggling of wheat flour from neighbouring French speaking countries.

According to the Association, surveillance on the markets in some regional capitals had revealed that unapproved French labelled wheat flour products were gradually flooding the market at relatively cheaper prices.

The development, they said was among other things depriving the State of the needed revenue to be generated through import duties and exposing the public to unwholesome food.

“It would interest you to know that most of these smuggled wheat flours have foreign languages inscribed on the bag/jute sack, which makes it difficult for one to even identify their expiration date or wholesomeness,” said Mr Samson Asaki Awingobit, the Executive Secretary of the Association at a press briefing.

He explained that the smuggled products cost 50 per cent less than the prices on the Ghanaian market due to the intervention of the government of Cote D’Ivoire to cushion its citizens by granting exemption from payment of duty/taxes on imports for 90 days.

“The government did that to counter the rise in the prices of flour. In doing so, the Ivorian government also placed a ban on the exportation of the flour produced under the exemption. Unfortunately, this flour in no time has found its way into the Ghanaian market,” he said.

The Association also called on government to create an enabling environment for the local flour milling industry to thrive and compete with others in the sub-region.

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