MPs Make Case for Retail Businesses

Members of Parliament (MPs) have expressed concern about the way foreigners have been taking over retail business which by law should be preserved exclusively for Ghanaians only.

They have, therefore, called on the necessary law enforcement agencies to strictly ensure that retail businesses are undertaken by only Ghanaians to safeguard local businesses in the country.

Members from both sides of the House expressed their worry over the current phenomenon which is endangering retail business of Ghanaians when the New Patriotic Party (NPP) MP for Manhyia North, Collins Owusu Amankwah, drew the attention of the House to the flagrant breach of the Ghana Investment Promotion Law (Act 865) by foreigners yesterday in Parliament which, according to him, is seriously affecting local businesses in the country.

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) MP for Tamale Central, Inusah Fuseini, said even though Ghana had signed on to the ECOWAS Treaty of free movement of goods and services across the region, the supreme laws of the land and other related legislations take precedence over the ECOWAS Treaty.

He explained that per the laws of the country, if any foreigner wants to establish any business in the country, the person must first invest $1 million into that business and also be ready to employ 12 Ghanaians from the scratch of the business.

He further indicated that an investor must also obtain resident permit to enable him open and run his business.

The Majority Leader and NPP MP for Suame, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, said all countries in the West African sub-region have laws protecting local businesses or retail work.

He said the recent clashes at Suame Magazine in Kumasi between Ghanaian retailers in spare parts and their Nigerian counterparts were very unfortunate. He, however, indicated that  many of the Nigerians doing retailing job in spare parts are not qualified to do so because most of them have either not registered their businesses or registered them to just supply hospital equipment, and have ended up dealing in spare parts.

He called on the law enforcement agencies to do the needful to ensure that Ghanaian retailers are protected under the laws of the country.

By Thomas Fosu Jnr