Frequently asked questions

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1. What is the role of GEPA in Ghana’s Export Trade?

Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA) is the National Export Trade Support Institution, facilitating the development and promotion of Ghana’s Non-Traditional Exports.

It was established by NLCD 369 in 1969 as an agency of the Ministry of Trade and Industry with the mandate to develop and promote Ghanaian exports. The focus of GEPA has primarily been to diversify Ghana’s export base from the traditional export products of Gold, Cocoa Beans, Timber Logs and Lumber and Electricity. Currently, there are over 383 different non-traditional Export products categorized into Agricultural, Processed/semi Processed and Handicrafts.

GEPA is positioned in the national export system as a coordinating pivot for the various public and private sector trade agencies involved in trade development and facilitation.

2. What is Non-traditional Exports?

All export commodities in Ghana have been categorized into two main groups: Traditional Exports and Non-traditional. The traditional export products are

  • Mineral ore such as unprocessed gold,
  • Cocoa Beans,
  • Timber Logs and Lumber
  • Electricity
  • Fresh fish
  • Fresh yam

Non –traditional exports are all other products outside the above list of traditional export products. They are categorized into Agricultural, Processed/semi Processed, Handicrafts and Services exports

3. What procedures must I go through in before I can commence my export business?

An exporter must first of all register his business with the Registrar General’s Department. Then he registers with GEPA with the following requirements:

For a Limited Liability Company:

  1. A Certificate of Incorporation
  2. A Certificate to Commence Business
  3. The Company’s Regulation Code
  4. Tax Identification Number (TIN)
  5. E-mail address

For Sole Proprietorship/ Enterprise

  1. A Certificate of Registration
  2. Form A
  3. E-mail address
4. How do I get ETLS Approval?

ETLS is ECOWAS Trade Liberalization Scheme. It a scheme drawn up by member states of ECOWAS to eliminate tariff and non-tariff measures that obstruct the free flow of goods in the sub-region.

A manufacturer who wants to export within West African Sub-region and enjoy the benefits of the ETLS must after registering with GEPA, fulfill the following requirements:

  • Obtain an ECOWAS Trade Liberalization Scheme Registration Form GEPA
  • Return the completed forms to GEPA for onward forwarding to the Secretariat in Abuja for approval.

An Exporter registering for the first time is advised to state the names of future products to be produced. If this is not done, the exporter will have to apply for the scheme for each separate product that is produced in future.

4. How do I get ETLS Approval?

ETLS is ECOWAS Trade Liberalization Scheme. It a scheme drawn up by member states of ECOWAS to eliminate tariff and non-tariff measures that obstruct the free flow of goods in the sub-region.

A manufacturer who wants to export within West African Sub-region and enjoy the benefits of the ETLS must after registering with GEPA, fulfill the following requirements:

  • Obtain an ECOWAS Trade Liberalization Scheme Registration Form GEPA
  • Return the completed forms to GEPA for onward forwarding to the Secretariat in Abuja for approval.

An Exporter registering for the first time is advised to state the names of future products to be produced. If this is not done, the exporter will have to apply for the scheme for each separate product that is produced in future.

5. Why should I register with GEPA when I want to export?

GEPA is a statutory body set up by NLCD 396 under the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MOTI) to develop and promote Ghana’s exports. On 7th April 2000, MOTI issued an administrative directive to ALL EXPORTERS to register with GEPA. The objectives of the registration exercise are as follows:-

  • To build a database that will facilitate the collection of up-to-date information on exports and exporters for the provision of appropriate assistance programmes (both national and international) for export companies;
  • The matching of exporters with foreign buyers and other business interests;
  • To monitor the performance of exporters for purposes of export support schemes, awards and selection and recommendation for other enhanced facilities/incentives provided by GEPA and other export-related institutions;
  • To give due regard to recognizable and reliable export companies to be carried in national export drive programmes;
  • To provide the basis for strengthening private sector product associations

The registration is renewable on an annual basis and it constitutes the first step in the system designed to improving the monitoring of Ghana’s.

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