The Minority has described the decision by the Government, acting through the Energy Commission, to ban the importation of all used electrical appliances into the country as most unfortunate.
According to the Minority, the decision must be reviewed immediately.
This policy if not reviewed, the Minority believes will not only render a vast majority of those who trade in these appliances unemployed, but would equally have severe economic consequences on the already impoverished Ghanaian consumer, since most many depend largely on these appliances.
A statement signed by John Abdulai Jinapor, MP-Yapei/Kusawgu Constituency and Ranking Member, Mines, and Energy Committee, said the way and manner in which the Legislative Instrument (LI) was rushed through Parliament without adequate consultation and extensive engagement with the various stakeholders was most unfortunate and appalling.
“It is important to remind the Energy Commission that best practices will require the Commission to engage in extensive consultations particularly with the Mines and Energy Committee of Parliament, to solicit their views and input on such an important LI before implementation.
“Even more disturbing is the lack of a grace period or transition period before implementing this policy. For such a policy that has far-reaching consequences, it is only proper that some transition period is allowed to enable traders and consumers ample time to adjust to the policy, especially this time that the uncertainties in the Ghanaian economy are abound,” the statement said.
It noted that some of these used electrical appliances can be more energy efficient and durable than new ones depending on the make, brand, and standards.
This policy, the statement said clearly contradicts the Government's position that the country has so much excess capacity.
“For the records, it must be noted that the current electricity tariff structure is graduated in bands with higher payments for higher electricity consumption which serves as a gentle caution for consumers to acquire energy-efficient appliances whether new or used ones.
“By this policy, even a returnee Ghanaian is not allowed to come along with his or her 3-month-old electrical appliance, which, by all intends and purposes, could still be as good and useful as a new one. This current policy is not only unfair but discriminatory,” it added.
The solution to achieving energy efficiency and preventing ‘DUMPING’ according to the Minority is to resort to the use of standards and effective regulatory measures rather than “this very harsh policy of banning all used electrical appliances.”
“So, the government must be ready to engage, learn from best practices, and adopt sustainable regulatory measures to achieve results other than reacting inappropriately to situations such as this.”
The Minority has, therefore, called on the Energy Commission and for that matter the government, to as a matter of urgency, withdraw this current policy and allow for further consultation, engagement with the relevant stakeholders and a possible review and adjustments before the implementation of the policy.