ICUMS to be deployed at the end of May at Tema Port After Successful Simulation
A simulation exercise for the new Integrated Customs Management Systems (ICUMS) has been undertaken by the Ghana Revenue Authority GRA together with the Ghana Link Network Services Limited and the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA).
The exercise which aims at testing the capability of ICUMS in helping the free flow of both import and export saw the presence of representatives from the Meridian Port Services (MPS) Limited, Ghana Shippers Authority (GSA), Shipping Lines, National Security, Narcotics Control Board, Food and Drugs Authority (FDA), Bank of Ghana (BOG), Ghana Standard Authority, Free Zones Authority and all other stakeholders at the Port of Tema.
The exercise was conducted to test the response time in handling the simulated incident when numerous government units are involved in responding immediately upon request. This was illustrated in a scenario involving the grounding of a vessel due to an oil spill that could have environmental repercussions on the port’s marine wildlife.
The Senior Minister, Yaw Osafo-Maafo together with some government officials were present to observe the exercise and stress test. He expressed his satisfaction of progress of work so far in the implementation of the project but also charged the GRA to ensure that the ICUMS has a smooth take-off.
He said, “this exercise has been very successful with the system able to accept the manifest from shipping lines, and the ability of freight forwarders to use it. I must say with what we have seen today I have no doubt that we’ll be able to take–off come implementation date. The rest of the work rests on the Customs officials who will have to stand ready for the take-off.”
The preparedness of the ICUMS for public use at the Sea Port of Tema and Kotoka International Airport (KIA) proves that the simulation exercise was successful. The Acting Commissioner–General of the GRA, Amisshadai Owusu-Amoah, after the exercise, assured the Senior Minister of his outfit’s willpower to ensure the project’s smooth take-off.
“Everything is going as planned and I’m impressed with the effort put in by the service provider and my officers. The simulation has been successful and it gives us the confidence with regards to the rollout date,” he stated.
He further stated that the country will see an increase in revenue over time as many of the current gaps will be blocked when the ICUMS is fully implemented at the Tema Port which is the biggest in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Part of the delegation were the Minister of Trade, Alan Kyeremanteng and his Deputy Carlos Ahenkora as well as the Deputy Minister of Finance, Kwaku Kwarteng and other government officials.
Currently, training and registration for users of the ICUMS system which covered freight forwarders, Shipping Lines, government agencies, GRA Customs officials and all other individuals who will be using the system, are underway. The ICUMS system is expected to be deployed at the end of the month of May at the Tema Port and the KIA for full operation.