The Ghana Union of Traders’ Association (GUTA) wants government to grant its members a three-week moratorium to aid them to mobilize funds to clear their goods from the country’s Seaports.
This comes on the heels of the Ministry of Transport’s directive to shipping companies asking them to suspend demurrage, rent charges and others on cargoes at the Seaports.
A statement signed by the President of GUTA, Dr. Joseph Obeng dated Sunday 26th April, 2020, stated that, “as a matter of expediency, we would appeal to the Government through the Minister of Transport and also our Sector Minister, Honourable Minister of Trade and Industry, to give all those who have been affected in this matter of 30th March to 19th April, 2020, a grace period of three (3) weeks to mobilize funds and clear their goods at the ports”.
The statement further explained: “We have received a copy of a letter on the same subject matter from the Ship Owners and Agents Association of Ghana to the Ghana Shippers’ Authority expressing some reservations regarding some aspects of the contents of the directive. Thus, this will go a long way to avert any agitation that may arise out of the frustrations that our members encounter at the moment.”
GUTA has also asked for clarity on cargo arriving between the lock-down period up to the date of lifting on April 19, 2020; and what should be expected in case of another partial lock-down.
The Union is also seeking for an explanation on the issue of how cargo arriving within this period should be treated as the lock-down has been lifted.