The customs in Ghana allows some goods and services as well as some specific groups of importers to enjoy some amount of import duty exemptions. The reasons among others could include the necessity or importance labeled or associated with such goods or organizations.
Specific government institutions, privileged persons or organizations such as diplomatic missions may enjoy some form of
exemptions from the payment of import duty and some other taxes in addition to some goods like aircraft parts and accessories, educational, cultural or scientific materials and food specifically put up for infant feeding.
The following category of imported goods also enjoy some form exemption from the payment of import duty under the Ghana customs regime.
1 Goods meant for Charity
Goods meant for charity or goodwill are exempted from the payment of import duty. The right documentation from the appropriate government body or sector ministry must however be obtained in other to enjoy this concession. Thus whiles charity goods meant for children would require contacts with the ministry for women and gender affairs that meant for hospitals would also require directions from the health ministry.
- Agricultural Machinery
In order to promote agriculture in the country, imported machinery meant for the sector enjoy some amount of exemptions from the payments of import duty. Machinery, plant ,apparatus and spare parts meant for agriculture purposes enjoy this concession.
Also, certain food stuffs including raw foodstuff originating from a West African country enjoys free import duty as well as fish caught by Ghanaian owned canoes, fishing floats or gears.
- Samples and Advertising materials.
Goods imported into the country as samples for potential trade agreements or for the purposes of exhibitions but with the intention to be re-exported would not attract the payment of import duty. Other advertising materials like stickers and posters, drawings, framed posters and paintings having an advertisement indelibly printed or engraved on them and imported solely for the purposes of advertising would also enjoy this concession.
- Buses with more than 30 seater capacity
Yes vehicles that are imported into the country and designed to carry 30 or more seated passengers enjoy a 0% import duty. What this practically means is that an importer is exempted from paying the 20% of CIF import duty that should have been levied on such vehicles. Note however that other taxes like VAT, NHIL levy or over aged penalty if applicable would be charged.
- Personal effects
The personal effects of a person entering into Ghana shall enjoy some sort of exemptions from the payments of duty. The goods must however be for use by the passenger concerned and not for sale. Electrical goods must be in use by the person for at least 6 months to qualify. Certain goods like wearing apparels, toys and articles of household use ,glassware, linen, cutlery plates, sound recording gadgets(not for commercial recording) wine not exceeding 750ml all enjoy this exemption provided the required conditions are met.
This however does not include personal items like arms and ammunition, vehicles or goods imported for trade purposes. Note, A Passenger Unaccompanied Baggage Declaration (PUBD) Form must be completed to account for part of one’s baggage which has arrived in advance or left behind to arrive in another aircraft, ship, vehicle or by post
- Removal articles
Customs has a duty free concession for Ghanaians who have stayed outside the country for more than 12 continuous months and are moving residence back to the country. Removal articles such as movable personal effects, domestic appliances, collectors pieces, household provisions kept in stock and other equipments (other than agriculture, commercial or industrial plant) would be considered under this arrangements. Again, these removal articles does not include arms, ammunitions or restricted items as those may only be imported with special permits.
In conclusion, it must be noted that, there is a difference between import duty and other taxes such as VAT, NHIL levy, ECOWAS levy etc and as such while some of the above goods or organizations may be exempted from paying duty it is important to note that other charges like handling fees, VAT, demurrage (if accrued) etc may still be paid. Please check with a customs official or your forwarding agent to know which taxes you are to pay and those exempted from.
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