The current high-interest rates in Ghana are the major contributor to the low number of new imported vehicles in the country. This is despite the fact that the automobile industry is the major contributor to economic growth in Ghana through revenue from foreign exchange.

New vehicles coming into the country through Takoradi and Tema harbors are slapped with high excise duties. These duties include import duty, clearing duty and vehicle duty. The duties have reached surprisingly high levels with some vehicles charged a duty of 100 million cedis (GHc10, 000) or more. The high costs had prompted one private citizen, Mr. Abena Agyeman-Duah to petition the government to address this issue.

Kassem Odaymat, Rana Motors Chief Operations Officer urged the Bank of Ghana to slash the current interest rates. This, he said, would enable Ghanaian motorists to afford new imported vehicles easily. Mr. Odaymat noted that the high costs rendered many Ghanaians unable to afford new cars. Rana Motors is a marketing company of automobiles based in Ghana.

Further, Mr. Odaymat said that this situation was causing an influx of second-hand vehicles in the country. This is because imported second-hand vehicles are cheaper than the new ones. This has, in turn, contributed to the high level of pollution, especially air pollution in the country. He also pointed out that the influx of second-hand vehicles was negatively impacting on the country’s economy. The government incurs high costs on maintenance of infrastructure especially roads. Currently, most public roads in Ghana are deteriorating with the major highway, Tema Motorway, falling apart. The remaining government funds are barely enough to cater for new infrastructural developments in Ghana.

These concerns were made while Ghana launched the Ford Truck 3543T in Accra. The 6x4 tractor head is the latest models from Ford Trucks. It is tailored to meet the current motor demands in the market. Ghana will be the first country of a launch of the Ford Truck.