The Ghana Association of Restructuring and Insolvency Advisors (GARIA) says it will continue its advocacy to have a new insolvency bill passed into law when the seventh Parliament is inaugurated in January 2017.
Speaking at an end of year dinner for stakeholders, Mr Felix Addo, the President of GARIA, said the passage of the bill into law to protect businesses in distress from collapse would be a key priority for 2017.
The bill, which was before Cabinet could not get to the current Parliament for passage into law.
“We have to start the process all over again. However, we are encouraged that some old members of Parliament who were part of the process are still there and we are hopeful that our bill will see the light,” he said.
Mr Addo explained that the absence of provisions to give respite to companies in distress positions to restructure and be able to turnaround their businesses without folding up was key to growth.
Currently, the only option for businesses in debt is to fold-up.
“The current practice where businesses are compelled to shut down over huge debts is not good enough as some of those companies could be restructured and revived as is the case in other jurisdictions,” he added.
Under the current law, which is more than 53 years old, when a company is unable to meets its business needs/debts, its creditors may, after a 31-day period, commence liquidation, a situation the GARIA President described as not business-friendly.
Mr Addo said because most companies were micro, small and medium enterprises, there must be systems or institutional arrangements for those companies when they fall into distress.
“It is therefore important for Ghana to have a good regime so that in addition to all our democratic dividend, goodwill and political dividends, we will be able to attract FDIs to the country,” he said.
On the companies’ code, Mr Addo said the Association would ensure that it was amended to reflect modern trends and challenges facing businesses.
GARIA would also embark on stakeholder education, workshop and seminars to keep members abreast of development.