Frequently Asked Questions
Operations, Services & Products
Who is GCNet?
Established in 2000, GCNet (Ghana Community Network Services Limited) has lived through all administrations since the onset of the democratic dispensation. It became operational during the later era of former President Rawlings through into the era of former President Rawlings. It continued operations under the regimes of former Presidents Kufuor, Atta – Mills and Mahama. For close to two decades since its inception in 2000 under the HE President John Agyekum Kufour Administration, and its formal launch by the late Vice President, HE Aliu Mahama, GCNet has been at the centre of Ghana’s digitization journey by reducing the associated cost of trade and improving business competitiveness
What is ownership structure of GCNet?
GCNet is a joint venture public-private partnership (PPP) Company in which the Government holds thirty-five (35) percent of the shareholding through investments made in the Company by the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA) and GCB Securities Limited. Ecobank, O3TAP and SGS SA are the private partners. The majority shareholder is SGS (Switerland) with 65%. In 2000, when no investor believed in the vision, SGS SA did.
Does GCNet have an end to end system?
- GCNet networks all parties to an end to end smart single window platform, ensuring efficiency, transparency and security in the trade facilitation and revenue mobilization ecosystem. The Single Window is made up of different systems including; Ghana Integrated Cargo Clearance System (GICCS), Electronic Ministries, Departments and Agencies (eMDA), Business Intelligence and Data warehouse.
- An end to end SW platform has existed in Ghana since the deployment of the GCNet system. This system has been revamped and integrated with other systems into a comprehensive platform that allows for all pre-arrival and post arrival transactional processes. The Pre-arrival encompasses electronic manifest issuance and administration, issuance of permits and exemptions, valuation, classification and exemptions.
The Clearance process includes declaration submission, validation and duty computation and payment of duties, taxes, levies and administrative fees and charges.
Cargo management platform is for the movement and tracking of cargo within the port and an electronic delivery order system used by the shipping lines and terminal operators for the release of cargo.
The Trading Community : Permits and exemptions , valuation and classification, manifest submission and administration , declaration, cargo management, Letter of Commitment , Electronic Delivery Order, e-payments, e-Insurance, Business Intelligence – Bank of Ghana, Immigration, Statistical Service, DVLA,
Thus within the context of the Buy-Ship-Pay Model of the UN/CEFACT Single Window for international supply chain all the relevant segments of the supply chain have been captured in terms of Logistics, Transportation, Warehousing, Customs and Post Arrival Processes.
Which Agencies interface with GCNet. These reflect the levels of integrations
- 1020 declarants
- 137 shipping lines
- 460 consolidators
- 21 terminal operators
- 174 Oil Marketing Companies
- Meridian Ports Services (MPS)
- 41 MDAs
- Commercial Banks
- Insurance companies
- Financial institutions
Does GCNet Have a valid contract?
GCNet is contracted till 2023 as the pioneer e-solutions provider at the heart of Government’s digitization agenda. It is mandated to provide an end-to-end smart e-customs trade facilitation service ranging from the single window platform and a back end customs management system. Abrogation of GCNet contract for its unexpired term will cost the economy $120m and further $250m for infrastructure and related intellectual property rights.
What are intellectual property issues of concern?
GCNet has exclusive rights to the Source Code, System Architecture Log Information, Information on Key Staff and related critical intellectual rights data. However, Government is only entitled to data from the system, which is regularly shared with appropriate institutions and personalities concerned.
What is the revenue history for Ghana since GCNet was established?
Revenue realised from International Trade ( Import Tax) in 2003 which was GHS 249m, shot up to GHS 603m, GHS 740m, GHS 838m in 2004, 2005 and 2006 respectively. The upward trajectory continued in 2007 through 2011 with GHS 1.2bn, GHS 1.8bn, GHS 2.1bn, GHS 2.4bn and GHS 3.7bn respectively. Further revenue increases were recorded between 2012 and 2019. GHS 4.7bn was mobilised in 2012, GHS 5.4bn in 2013, GHS 6.9bn in 2014, GHS 9.7bn in 2015, GHS 13.1bn in 2016, GHS 15.4bn in 2017, GHS 16.3bn in 2018 and GHS 15.7bn in 2019.
How much tax does GCNet pay to GCNet?
GCNet pays taxes on all its earnings and operational collaterals averaging GHS 72m, in statutory payments, for instance between 2015 and 2019 per year. Dividend payments to Government represented through its institutions for its shareholding in GCNet amount to over GHS 120m
Is GCNet system robust enough?
- The GCNet system is as robust as any other world class smart end to end trade facilitation platform with all the necessary and sufficient security protocols, which has been tried and tested over the past 17 years with inputs from stakeholders.
- It must be noted that security upgrades are consistently carried out in the light of GCNet’s adherence to international security protocols. GCNet as a repository of government data continues to leverage on many international certification regimes including ISO 27001 for information security management and ISO 9000 for quality management to further ensure security standards and compliance. The company continues to strive for international standards in all its business operation.
Capacity of GCNet
- GCNet operates a state of the art Tier III Data Centre and four other Data Centers across strategic locations across the country as part of its deep commitment to ensure data integrity and security in the space in which it operates. The Tier III Data Centre located at its Head Office is 95% automated and arguably among the few if any in the country. It operates on international models of guaranteeing 99.982% availability for Tier III facilities. The Data Centre and the other Centers caters for the 110 Customs sites and 69 Tax offices of the Ghana Revenue Authority across the length and breadth of the country. It also caters for all the operational needs of the Registrar Generals Department (RGD) having deployed the e-Registrar for the Department.
FAQs about LOC
What is the Letter of Commitment (LOC?)
LOC stands for Letter of Commitment, this is accompanied with direct exports from Ghana. It is an electronic module on Ministries, Departments and Agencies (eMDA) portal, developed and deployed by GCNet for the Bank of Ghana (BoG) to ensure effective monitoring of export and repatriation of export proceeds.
When was the LOC introduced?
It was introduced in July 2016 to track the repatriation of export proceeds into the economy. Ghana has saved more than $7.5bn to date in exports since its introduction.
How is the LOC valuable to BoG?
- It was introduced to address an annual estimated loss of $3bn, which make up a third of the country’s value from exports proceeds through the violation of the foreign account regulations.
- It has eliminated human interference in export monitoring, improved tracking of exports proceeds into the country and boosted the availability of forex in the economy.
- The result is reduced time to process export documents, elimination of delays, reduction in face-to-face meetings and greater transparency.
Who Uses the LOC?
All banks use the LOC with core functions to process Bank pre-registration requests and remittance registrations. All exporters also necessarily use the LOC.
How do I obtain LOC number?
LOC number can be obtained by applying for it on the GCNet EMDA portal. https://emda.gcnetghana.com/mda/TraderLogin.do
Do I need an LOC for all trade transactions?
No. LOC is for only direct export declarations
What do I do when I have an export declaration with Non Conformity?
Contact Bank of Ghana on 0299 502 860
FAQs about Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN)
What is the Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN)?
- A Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) is a unique number generated upon request by GRA for persons and corporate entities.
How do I get a TIN?
Go to any nearest GRA Tax office or visit the eTax Portal at www.graeservices.com
What supporting documents do I need to obtain a TIN?
- A valid means of identification such as National ID Card, Voters ID, Driver’s License or Passport.
If I have a SSNIT number do I still need a TIN?
How old do I have to be before I can get a TIN?
Any economically active person is required to obtain a TIN, there is no age restriction.
I have a TIN, do I need another one?
- No, unless it was issued prior to November 2011 in which case you must re-register for a ‘New TIN’
Why do I need a TIN?
It is a requirement for any person who wishes to perform one of the following activities:
- Register a Company or Business
- Clear goods through an air or sea port
- Register land
- Renew a Driver’s License
- Register a vehicle
- Open a Bank Account
- Submit a bid to supply goods or services to Government
How long do I have to wait before getting my TIN?
- TINs are normally processed within 48 hours
Can I register for a TIN online?
Yes at www.graeservices.com
How much does it cost to get a TIN?
- The TIN is free. No payment should be made to obtain the TIN.
What happens to the taxes I paid before I got my TIN?
GRA is migrating tax records into the new Tax System, at this stage they will be associated with your new TIN.
Can non-Ghanaians apply for the TIN?
Yes, they are required to if they are economically active in Ghana or wish to access any of the above listed services
FAQs about Information Short Code – 1477
What is Short Code 1477?
It is an informational text short code to provide an avenue for all players in the trading community to easily have access the up to date on the go information about the clearance status of goods from the ports. It is a transparent, secure, convenient and cost saving way.
How do I know the duty payable for a car?
For a person to get the right information on or know the status of vehicles: Text the chassis number to 1477.
- One needs to text or enter the chassis number, which should be seventeen digit, to short code 1477 on all networks.
- Once the chassis number is entered and submitted, a prompt feedback pops up with information;
- Details of car being imported
- Transaction details
- Status of transaction
How Do I Know the Status of my Goods at the ports?
For a person to get the right information on all other imported goods:
- One has to text or enter the Customs Declaration Number (CDN) to short code 1477.
- Once that is done, i.e., enters the CDN, transaction details will show
- The current entry status of clearance for your goods
- The date of transaction
- The next required action to take to complete clearance process where necessary
- Other information
How do I get trained on GCNet Applications?
Visit this link and select the type of training you want
What is password frozen?
Password frozen occurs when an individual mistakenly enter his/her password three times.
Who are the stakeholders in the trading community?
GRA, GPHA, shipping lines, terminal operators, banks, DVLA, clearing agents, MDA’s, importers, exporters, freight forwarders.
What is CPC?
CPC stands for Customs Procedure Code, these codes are given per the kind of regimes and transaction being sought for. These codes are given by GRA customs
What is HS code?
HS code stands for Harmonized code and this is also given by GRA customs. They describes the item or commodity and its applicable taxes.
FAQs about the Ghana Single Window (GSW)
What is the Ghana Single Window App?
It is a mobile app that provides access to trade related information in Ghana
What is the benefit of the Ghana single Window to me?
It provides an easy way to access information anywhere anytime including: trade processes, shipment statuses, arrival and departure schedules, planning tools to name just a few.
How reliable is the information found on the GSW site?
The information is updated live from the systems used by the logistics industry in Ghana
How secure is the GSW terms of protecting my data?
GSW request the bare minimum of data from you to enable services to operate, it is not used for any other purpose.
Is it possible for me to pay my duties and other costs online on the GSW platform?
No the GSW App is informational only.
Who can use the GSW app?
Any individual with an interest in trade or who wants to tracks his or her imports or exports.
What do I need to use the GSW App?
The GSW App runs on both Android and Apple IOS, it is available from Google Play and the App Store.