GRA confiscates illicit tobacco products valued at ¢7.9m

November 22, 2023 / Comments (0)

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The Customs Division of Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has confiscated a substantial quantity of illicit tobacco products, which were unlawfully smuggled into Ghana through unapproved border routes.

The action, according to the GRA is a crucial step in its continued commitment to tackle the smuggling, importation, and sale of illicit tobacco products, which have been infiltrating the Ghanaian markets.

All the confiscated products had been illicitly brought into Ghanaian territory.

The street value of the confiscated products amounted to ¢7,951,238.39.

A statement from the GRA said the action contravened the Public Health Act, 2012, Act 851, and the Tobacco Control Regulations (TCR), 2016 (L.I. 2247).

It explained that Section 16 of the TCR states that “a person shall not manufacture, import, export, supply, possess, or offer for sale an illicit tobacco or tobacco product”.

Furthermore, Section 15 of the Regulations stipulates that “a person shall not manufacture, import, or sell a tobacco or tobacco product unless the product is registered by the Authority,” in this case, the FDA.

The following brands were among the seized products: Oris Double Apple, Business Royals, Gold Seal, Bon, Yes, and Business Kings. Regrettably, none of these brands meet the standard requirements mandated by the laws of Ghana, including graphic health warnings, the “For Sale in Ghana” inscription, and Ghana Tax Stamps.

The statement assured that investigations are ongoing, as the GRA remains committed to identifying and apprehending the individuals responsible for the illicit trade.

“We will collaborate closely with relevant government agencies to ensure the arrest, prosecution, and appropriate sanctions for those involved”.

The GRA pledged that all seized products will be destroyed in accordance with legal protocols.

 “We appeal to the public to report any information on warehouses or illicit storage locations meant for hoarding illicit tobacco products. This will help combat the illegal trade to safeguard the nation’s revenue, and protect legitimate businesses”.


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