The Chief Executive Officer of the National Petroleum Authority (NPA), Hassan Tampuli, has revealed that the country loses about US$200 million in tax revenue due to the incidence of smuggling of petroleum products.
Speaking at the at this year’s Ghana International Petroleum Conference in Accra, Mr. Tampuli stated that these activities is also responsible for the country losing about US$12 million from the unified petroleum price fund annually.
He mentioned Takoradi and Tema ports, Prampram, Aflao and the eastern coastline as the unapproved offshore routes for the smuggling.
“These nefarious activities of the petroleum service providers and some that are not even service providers, led to the country losing colossal US$200 million per annum of tax revenue,” he said.
Mr. Tampuli stated that some elements in the petroleum industry have made it their business to engage in nefarious activities which eventually leaves the country poorer.
He expressed concerns about the smuggling of subsidised products such as premix, marine gas and gasoline, as well as what he termed fraudulent freight claims from some transporters and siphoning of LPG from bulk vehicles into surface tanks.
The Chief Executive revealed poor quality products from some neighbouring countries are smuggled by road through unapproved entry points between Ghana and Togo and eventually end up at private tank yards, mining companies and other retail outlets.
He further revealed that some companies have been sending gas oil declared for sale to foreign vessels at local filling stations while some of them have been engaging in under-declaration and non-declaration of products lifted at various depots.
“Over 300,000 metric tonnes of actual annual consumption was unreported [last year]” he said.
On the back of these, he said the GNPC has in collaboration with the Ghana Revenue Authority, the Ghana Navy and the security agencies rolled out measures to tackle the problem head-on to save the nation from the loses.
“I believe it is time for petroleum players in the sub-region to engage in a dialogue and the issues that confront us and find common unique solutions for the advancement of our respective countries.