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Free Zones Authority working to attract more businesses

BY: Dorothy Frances Ward/Florence Afriyie Mensah, GNA

The Ghana Free Zones Authority (GFZA) is working to provide incentive packages to help create viable and sustainable business environment to attract new investors into the free zone enclaves and support the growth of existing ones.

Mr Michael Okyere Baafi, the Executive Secretary of GFZA, said aside the 100 per cent duty free on all imports and exports by companies operating under the free zones, operators went through minimal customs formalities at the ports.

He said investors in the free zones enclaves would pay not more than 15 per cent as tax on their profits after the expiry of the 10-year tax free moratorium on their profits granted by the Government.

They are also allowed to operate foreign currency accounts with the Bank of Ghana.

Mr. Baafi made these known at a forum organised by the GFZA for chief executives of Free Zone Enterprises and owners of other businesses in the Ashanti, Brong Ahafo and Northern regions in Kumasi.

The forum, which was held under the theme; “Resolving Challenges for Business Growth”, aimed at informing investors and businesses of GFZA plans for this year, interact with front-line agencies and educate them on the opportunities and incentives while encouraging other businesses to join the free zones concept.

Mr Baafi said the mission of the Authority was to help position Ghana as a gateway to investors coming to West Africa.

The Authority is doing this through the provision of competitive Free Zone incentives and operation of an efficient one-stop-shop for information delivery on both domestic and foreign investment opportunities in the country.

Mr Baafi said some of the priority sectors identified to have comparative advantage for investments in Ghana were agro-food processing, sea-food processing, pharmaceuticals, metal fabrication, jewellery and craft production.

He said the whole country was accessible to potential investors who wanted to take advantage of the free zones as a focal point to produce goods for the foreign market, adding that the only criteria was for the investor to demonstrate ability to export 70 per cent of his products.

Mr Mike Dah, the Second in Command of the Free Zones Unit at the Ashanti Regional Customs Command, said officers would continue to monitor activities of all companies registered under the Authority to ensure strict compliance of regulations.


Credit: GNA