Thirteen public institutions undergo training on EPA exports requirements 

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Thirteen public institutions are undergoing a two-day training on exports requirements under the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA). 

The training organised by Compete Ghana, European Union (EU) and the Ministry of Trade and Industry has 10 modules, which sought to ensure that more of Ghana’s products could be marketed in the European market.

The training for the 13 participating institutions focused on Customs Procedures and Trade Facilitation under the EPA.

Mr. Dode Seidu, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Africa Trade Academy, said the training was focused on how to help Ghanaian public institutions implement effective trade facilitation measures to help them achieve the goals of the Ghana-EU partnership.

“The training is important because whenever there is trading of goods and services, it is important to have the necessary measures in place that would enable efficient, simplified, harmonised, and standardised processes to make goods across the borders seamlessly,” he added.

The CEO indicated that without some of these measures, trading between Ghana and the European markets would become a challenge, and that there would bring unintended trade barriers.

He noted the importance of public institutions working in the export and import value chain to work in harmony, which was a principle within the trade facilitation scope of work to achieve a border agency cooperation.

“And here we are looking at institutions working together, but already there are platforms where these institutions meet and discuss, but certainly it is important that not just at the level of the institutions at the highest levels but even those at the frontiers of the country,” Mr. Seidu stressed.

Mr. Seidu added that Ghana could get more of its goods into the EU market, which granted Ghanaians the opportunity to export into that space and vice versa.

Mr. Raffaele Quarto, Trade Consular, EU Delegation in Ghana, said the training was the first of its kind with different modules that was offered through the Compete Ghana programme to the different agencies in Ghana dealing with international trade.

He said there were representatives from different government agencies, but they would also be training business association companies and other NGOs that were involved in international trade.

The trade consular added that the institutions were expected also educate the public, exporters and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) who visited their offices for information to improve their day-to-day activities.

Mr. Nicholas Gebara, Team Leader of Compete Ghana, said they were helping trade exporters understand the EPA and develop their skills in exporting.

He said it was their expectation that the participants would understand the underlying key pillars of the agreement, and that there were different angles to the modules, which was why they developed them.

The team leader indicated that by discussions with the SMEs, those with limited knowledge about exports tried to seek guidance but not all had the idea on which institutions to visit.

“So with this, it has also created an avenue for the institutions to network and for the SMEs to know where to go first and in that order,” Mr. Gebara added.

The thirteen public institutions included the Ministry of trade and industry, Ghana Commodity Exchange, Food and Drugs Authority, Ghana Standards Authority, Ghana Revenue Authority, Ghana Investment Promotion Center.

The others included Ministry of foreign affairs and regional integration, Ghana International trade commission, Ghana free zones authority, Ghana Export Promotion Authority, Ghana Shippers Authority and two others.

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