A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) aimed at growing Ghana’s maritime sector has been signed between the National Insurance Commission (NIC), Ghana Shippers Authority (GSA) and the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA).
According to the NIC, the tripartite MoU will see to it that cargoes coming and leaving the country are insured by local insurance companies.
Dubbed the Marine Cargo Insurance Protocol, this will complement the implementation of Section 37 of the Insurance Act, 2006 to offer a major boost on insurance penetration and revenue mobilisation efforts.
Speaking at a signing ceremony in Accra on Wednesday, December 23, Commissioner of Insurance, Dr. Justice Yaw Ofori explained that the implementation of the protocol will help reduce foreign exchange repatriation to overseas insurance companies.
“This will thereby reduce the pressure of the Ghanaian cedi. The Marine Cargo Insurance Protocol will introduce transparency in customs revenue thereby assisting the Ghana Revenue Authority with projections based on market data,” he noted.
Justice Ofori added that his outfit has commenced work on the Marine and Aviation database which will electronically safeguard data on all marine and aviation insurance policies issued in Ghana.
“This is expected to enable the Customs Division of the GRA to verify the authenticity of all marine insurance documents submitted to them by importers in compliance with the Insurance Act hence the protocol,” he added.
Chief Executive of the Ghana Shippers Authority, Benonita Bismarck indicated that a successful implementation of the protocol will occupy an important place in overseas trade and commerce.
“The successful implementation of the protocol is hugely dependent on the capacity of the insurance companies in Ghana, both human and financial and there have been assurances from the NIC on their preparedness to institute a transparent and well-regulated system,” Ms. Bismarck said.
Commissioner General of the Ghana Revenue Authority, Rev. Ammishaddai Owusu-Amoah, on his part said the MoU had come at an opportune time as his outfit is embarking on aggressive revenue mobilisation.
“We warmly welcome this initiative that will further empower the Customs Division with compliance and ensure that cargo leaving and coming into the country is insured with local insurance companies,” he said.