Ghana: GRA Pilots Electronic Auction Program on Customs Integrated Management System

The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) Customs Division is piloting its electronic auction program for uncleared cargo at Tema Port through the Integrated Customs Management System (ICUMS).

Mr. Eric Afari, Chief Revenue Officer in charge of Customs Auctions, Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), who disclosed to Ghana News Agency, said piloting is underway on 15 vehicles for the process Friday and Saturday October 21. and 22, 2022.

Mr Afari said as of 11:20 a.m. the bidding process was going online with no issues reported and expressed hope that the pilot electronic auction would be a success to pave the way for the full roster for all uncleared cargo from October 31, 2022. , to replace the existing paper system.

He said the e-auction would enable all interested bidders to gain access using the online platform “auction.icums.gov.gh” to register using the Ghana Card.

He explained that after signing up on the website, the necessary registration information needs to be entered, after which a bidder could browse photos of the various items lined up for the auction to apply.

He added that the reserve price for all auctioned goods would be declared publicly online, where the computer system itself would automatically select the highest bidder.

He warned, however, that any bidders who fail to track their transactions after winning an auction will subsequently be barred from using the system.

Mr. Afari expressed hope that the electronic auction would facilitate much faster disposal of uncleared goods, decongest ports and state warehouses, and greatly facilitate revenue collection through auctions.

He said one of the main motivations for the introduction of electronic auction by management was to reduce the rate of negative deviations experienced by customs over the years.

He revealed that Customs had seen 9%, 20% and 11% negative auction deviations, respectively, in the years 2019, 2020 and 2021.

He revealed that some goods sat in port for a long time, causing some bidders to send them back on the pretext that they had gone bad and therefore needed replacement.

Mr Afari said some vehicles up for auction were in poor condition or too old, adding that because some bidders do not take their time to properly examine vehicles, they pay the duty before raising issues.

He added that some also who won bids did not pay on time, noting that some bidders also used fake vouchers.

“Some were able to get rid of the fake vouchers, others got arrested and we took them to court. They can scan the signatures and at compliance you see the voucher as a real voucher.

“That’s why we decided to go with electronic auctions, it will remove all bottlenecks,” he said. -GNA