Pharma importers urged to seek FDA advice before importing

PillsThe Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority at the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) has urged importers of pharmaceutical products to consult the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) for advice on their imports.

The Authority said the consultation is necessary to avoid expiration and undue delays at the warehouse.

The Authority noted that most of the goods imported into the country were unable to be cleared at the Airport due to the duty charges and as a result, the items are kept at the state warehouse for long periods and this poses health hazards.

Mr Emmanuel Adjei, Chief Revenue Officer for State Warehouse at the KIA, said this in an interview with the Ghana News Agency in Accra when the Customs Division at the Airport destroyed unwholesome, damaged and expired goods, at the Nsawam land fill site.

The items included foodstuffs, chemicals, paints, pharmaceutical products, recorded CDs, calendars and other printed materials.

The exercise was necessitated because the goods had overstayed the mandatory storage period at the state warehouse, and had been abandoned by their owners.

Mr Adjei said it was imperative for importers to consult with the Customs Division to be educated on tax rates before importing goods.

This, he explained, was critical because the importers would have had preliminary information about the goods and the tax elements and be prepared adequately to avoid any unforeseen situation in the clearing of the goods.

Mr Thomas Adochim, Public Relations Officer, Customs Excise and Preventive Services, at KIA, said the exercise was done to decongest the warehouse.

He said the continued storage of the goods could lead to the outbreak of an epidemic, since some of the items were expired food and dangerous chemicals.

He said the goods were only destroyed after owners had failed to clear them upon several requests in line with the rules of the Authority.

Present at the exercise were representatives of the Food and Drugs Authority, the National Security Coordinator at KIA, Bureau of National Investigations, the KIA, Port Health at KIA and the Accra Metropolitan Assembly.

Source: GNA

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