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Accept foreigners in retail trade – Nigerian plead

CEO of Start in Ghana Investment Limited,Yahaya Alhassan and others at a press conference

Nigerian traders in Ghana have called for the amendment of portions of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC)Act that bars foreigners from engaging in retail business activities in the country.

Under section 27(1)(a) of the GIPC Act, foreigners are barred from engaging 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.

At a press conference organised in Accra yesterday, Start in Ghana Investment Limited registered its displeasure of ridding the market of foreigners.

The Chief Executive Officer of Start in Ghana Investment Limited,Yahaya Alhassan, argued that Ghana is bound by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Treaty to allow its members to engage in business activities in the country.

He said, Nigerians should be exempted from the GIPC Act that prevents foreigners from doing business in the country and that there are Ghanaians in Nigeria who are engaging in petty trading.

“We want amendment or complete scrap of the Act so that it would not include West African States. If you go to Togo or Benin, you will find Ghanaians selling ‘waakye’ so it is only fair that we reciprocate that gesture here,” he added.

Alhassan described the decision of the Ministry of Trade and Industry to move Nigerians out of the market by Friday 27thJuly, 2018as “unnecessary and uncalled for.”

The decision follows a petition by the Ghana Union of Traders Association’s (GUTA) to government to give a deadline to foreign retailers in the country to move out of the market.

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