Government sets July 27 deadline for foreigners to halt retail trade
The Ministry of Trade and Industry has served notice to all foreigners engaged in the retail sector to move out of the retail sector by Friday, July 27
Ministry in a public notice published yesterday in the Daily Graphic newspaper warned offenders to move out of the markets by the deadline.
“Notice is hereby given to all non-Ghanaians who are engaged in retail trading activities contrary to the provision of the Act [GIPC Law 2013] to desist from doing so. All persons engaged in such practices are therefore advised to stop to avoid legal actions being taken against them,” the Ministry’s statement said.
“Offenders are entreated to move out of the markets by Friday, July 27, 2018,” the statement added.
The Ministry's statement explained that per the country’s laws, the retail sector is a preserve of Ghanaians.
It cited section 27 (1) of the GIPC Law 2013, (Act 865) which states that, “A person who is not a citizen or an enterprise which is not wholly owned by a citizen shall not invest or participate in the sale of goods or provision of services in a market, petty trading or hawking or selling of goods in a stall at any place,” the Trade Ministry warned non-Ghanaians selling goods or dispensing services in the retail sector to “be advised accordingly.”
Foreigners not legally barred from retail trade - Former Trade Minister
The Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, in November 2014 said that there was no law that prevented foreigners from engaging in retail trade in the country.
Rather, he said, the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) Act, Act 865, prevented expatriates from doing petty trading in designated markets and not retail trade and therefore called on the media to report adequately on the law.
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“There is no law that prevents foreigners from engaging in retail trading activities. Rather, the law is clear on the fact that they should not engage in petty trading activities at a particular geographical market in any part of the country.
“This is what the media has not been able to report sufficiently on all this while,” Dr Spio-Garbrah, Minister under the erstwhile NDC administration when the executive of the Advertising Association of Ghana (AAG) called on him.
Dr Spio-Garbrah added that the GIPC law allowed foreigners to trade in the country provided they had US$1million in goods or cash to be ascertained by customs clearance forms or certified by the Bank of Ghana.