Barima Dr Ofori Ameyaw I, Chairman of the Tenants of Makola Shopping Mall Association (TOMSMA) on Tuesday said the lack of incentives and support from government was a major challenge to their businesses.
He cited lack of credit facilities which has hindered their ability to be competitive in the sub-region as a major problem affecting their capacity to graduate into industrial players.
Barima Ameyaw who said this at the inauguration of the Executives of the TOMSMA in Accra, stressed that the issues of high import duties, high fees and charges, numerous taxes, high exchange and interest rates by government was killing their businesses.
He said the TOMSMA was formed as an association to integrate with its mother union Ghana Union Traders of Association (GUTA), to grow stronger and be able to champion their course effectively.
This he said will help in no small measure in solving the myriad of problems bedevilling their association and as members of the trading community.
Barima Ameyaw I also mentioned high rent charges mostly quoted in dollars with existing skyrocketing dollar rate adding, “The rent is reviewed upward annually, which in every sense of the word, is only not proper but exploitative”.
He called on GUTA to channel their concerns to the appropriate authorities for intervention.
“We are also charged by our landlords to pay property rate with value-added tax on it when we are not the owners of the property. This is after paying huge sums of money as rent annually. We view this practice as a naked robbery that has to stop by all means,” he said.
Dr Joseph Obeng, GUTA President called on Government to consider the plight of traders in taking trade decisions.
He said government must not frighten traders, but be friendly with them and empower them economically through the subsidization of taxes to enable them to handle the needs of the citizenry affordably.