Trade Ministry issues guidelines on importation of African Textiles Prints

The Ministry of Trade and Industry on Wednesday announced guidelines or modalities for the importation of African Textiles Prints with effect from Monday, March 21, 2011.

A statement issued in Accra by Ms Hanna Tetteh, Sector Minister said the guidelines were intended to provide a framework of administrative procedures through which the numerous unfair trade practices would be controlled.

These include evasion of import duties and other taxes, under-invoicing, poor quality prints, pirating of patents and trademarks and smuggling.

For the purpose of these guidelines, African prints are, Real Super Wax Block Print, Super Real Wax, Imitation Wax, Java Print and Fancy Prints.

“All persons importing African prints shall be expected to comply with these regulations,” it added.

The statement said all importers of African prints were deemed to be companies duly registered with the Registrar-General’s Department and under the laws of Ghana to undertake such business.

For the purpose of monitoring their operations, they would be required to register with the Ministry of Trade and Industry and submit monthly returns on their imports of African prints.

The formats for registration and submission of the monthly returns are that importers of African prints shall register with the Ghana Standards Board (GSB) and present a sample of the African prints to be imported to GSB for pattern approval.

A vetting committee, comprising key stakeholders shall meet at GSB on every last Tuesday of the month to approve all samples prior to importation.

All African prints should be properly labeled in compliance with the Ghana Labeling Regulation, LI 1514 (1992).

Importation of African Textile Prints shall be done through any Port of entry, and importers are however, to declare and make known to the GSB the port of entry of any consignment prior to importation.

Imported African prints shall be regarded as “High Risk Goods” and shall be subjected to 100 per cent physical examination to be jointly conducted by officers from the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) and GSB.

The 100 per cent physical examination of African prints takes immediate effect.

A person who imports African prints through any port, other than the declared port, commits an offence and shall be prosecuted and have such import confiscated.

Similarly, a person who fails to comply with any of the directives in the guidelines or does not cooperate with officers carrying out any specific assignments under the guidelines shall be deemed to have committed an offence and shall be prosecuted accordingly.

Source: GNA

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