In June 2020, the Government of Ghana, Customs Division of the GRA, UNIPASS-Ghana and other well-meaning agencies joined up to usher Ghana’s trade to a single window system; the Integrated Customs Management System (ICUMS).
Functioning fully as an e-Customs system, it was introduced to coordinate cross-border trade activities, cut cost to stakeholders and increase government revenue mobilisation.
The change stemmed from the rising cost in port transactions, delayed clearance of goods and what the government deemed, ‘a huge leakage in revenue mobilisation.’ Another challenge stakeholders faced was the use of multiple online platforms in assessing valuation, classification, risk management and payment; which were jointly managed by the Ghana Community Network Services (GCNet) Ltd and West Blue Consulting at the time.
The innovation was launched to revive the trade sector and came as a direct successor of the former Pre-Arrival Assessment Report System (PAARS) and the Ghana Customs Management System (GCMS).
The ICUMS Portal saw a major facelift in interface design and the application of standard web technology to simplify navigation and help cross-border traders understand it better.
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