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22.10.2008 General News

Ghana supply Coy back on its feet

By The Statesman

Ghana Supply Company Limited which nearly collapsed after losing its monopoly as the nation's sole procurer for Ministries, Departments and Agencies of Government, is back on its feet.

A re-constituted board of directors, with support from management, has re-engineered the company"s operations with appropriate strategies to overcome challenges such as falling revenues and profits, over staffing and shortage of qualified personnel to effectively run the company.

GSCL, formerly known as Ghana Supply Commission, now operates under five strategic business units namely Procurement Consultancy, Procurement Audit, Supply of Goods, Training of Stores and Procurement Personnel and Haulage Services.

The chairman of the board of directors, Kwame Osei-Prempeh, disclosed these at the official opening of the Takoradi branch office at a brief ceremony last Friday.

Opening of the Takoradi branch office is to give meaning to the company's strategy to expand its operations throughout the country.

The Statesman has learnt of plans by GSCL management to open an outlet at Boankra in the Ashanti Region when the inland port becomes fully operational.

The board chairman noted that in an effort to diversify its operations, the company has also proposed in its Business Plan to move into shipping, procurement audit and supply through collaboration with local and foreign partners.

He disclosed that last year, after a long period of non-performance, the company was able to pay dividend to its sole shareholder, the Ghana Government, for the years 2005 and 2006 and hoped this trend would continue in the years ahead.

Mr Osei-Prempeh appealed to the Ministry of Finance to fast track the company's proposal to support it with an opportunity to undertake procurement audit or value for money assessment on behalf of Ministries, Departments and Agencies.

 He said this support would go a long way in helping the company to grow and increase its profitability through expanded operations in addition to enhancing dividend paid to Government.

Ghana Supply Company Limited, then Commission was established by an Executive Instrument in 1960 as the central purchasing agent for the government of Ghana with the sole purpose of handling the business of procurement for government.

The company however started facing a number of challenges in 1999 following the loss of its earlier monopoly as the sole procurer for government.

The liberalisation of the procurement market and the consequent promulgation of the Public Procurement Act in 2003 also added to the woes of the company.

These have undoubtedly impacted negatively on the company's operations.