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Ghana: Govt urged to leverage on e-commerce to improve tradeWednesday, October 28, 2015 > 13:37:15
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of SOFTtribe, Mr Herman Chinery-Hesse, has asked the government to take advantage of the electronic commerce (e-commerce) platform to improve trade in the West African sub-region.
According to him, the e-commerce platform has revolutionised the way businesses are done and, therefore, the government must also employ strategies to capitalise on the advantages and make revenue out of it.
Speaking to the GRAPHIC BUSINESS at a summit in Accra, Mr Chinery-Hesse stressed that the e-commerce platform had become the preferred method of shopping for many people worldwide and Ghana must take advantage of it.
“Personally, I believe that Ghana will do very well with the e-commerce services if government will be able to adopt tactical steps in using the platform to trade within the West African sub-region,” he said.
Advantages of e-commerce
The e-commerce is the trading of funds for goods and services over an electronic medium, typically the Internet.
Mr Chinery-Hesse said the ability to conduct business around the world through internet had become a necessity therefore both the government could tap into it in order to enhance trade.
He said using the e-commerce purchasing options were quick and convenient, with the ability to transfer funds online, which will help consumers to save time and money by searching for the items and making their purchases online.
He said e-commerce was an efficient retail method for business transactions, adding that start-up costs for establishing an e-commerce business were far less than one expanding his or her business with more brick and mortar locations.
He also urged the youth, especially those developing apps softwares, to be innovative and avoid copying the ideas of other people.
He said apart from the moral argument that stealing other people’s ideas was wrong, dishonesty also killed innovation.
“Stealing ideas pushes creative people out of the industry because they have little motivation to keep developing programmes,” he said.
Challenges of operations
The Chief Executive Officer of Zoobashop.com a retail online shop, Mr Albert Biga, for his part, told the paper that even though there were challenges hindering the progress of e-commerce operations in Ghana, it was not peculiar to that section of trading alone.
He said some consumers were reluctant to embrace e-commerce because of privacy issues, since making an online purchase often required disclosing personal information such as an address, to which many are opposed and would only make their purchases only at a store.
Mr Biga explained that some people are resistant to change and may not want to embrace e-commerce because they lack knowledge about the process in buying items online.
He said a survey conducted by Zoobashop.com indicates that about 90 per cent of respondents were unable to complete the processes involved in purchasing an item online.