THE Association of Used Auto Parts Dealers (ASUAPAD) says the prices of vehicle spare parts on the market have remained relatively stable for the past one year.
This is in spite of concerns raised by the Ghana Private Roads and Transport Union (GPRTU) that prices of spare parts are on the rise and will, therefore, result in the increase of transport fares in its next fare computations.
The ASUAPAD has subsequently challenged GPRTU to publish any evidence which shows a rise in the price of spare parts from January 2017 to date.
“I can tell you on authority that we have not increased our prices for the past one year and so, therefore, if the GPRTU says otherwise we will urge them to provide evidence,” Mr Sammy Siaw Ampadu, the Chairman of the ASUAPAD, told the Graphic Business in an interview on January 9 in Accra.
The umbrella body of commercial drivers last week hinted of plans of an upward review in transport fares despite the relative stability in fuel prices.
The GPRTU is expected to consider the reviewed prices of spare parts, among other things, during the fare computations.
According to the union, drivers and transport owners over the years have had to bear the cost of the increase in spare parts because there was no avenue to adjust transport fares to shed some of the cost to passengers.
Mr Ampadu maintained that roping in the prices of spare parts anytime the GPRTU intended to raise transport fare brings negative publicity to the spare part dealers in the country.
“We do not want to be roped in anytime the GPRTU wants to increase transport fares; prices of spare parts have remained relatively stable for the past year and we want to set the records as such,” he said.
He observed that prices of the vehicle parts had only gone up in peculiar situations where a particular vehicle part had become scarce and in such situations, the demand drove the price.
According to Mr Ampadu, the price of Toyota Corolla shock absorber, for instance, had remained between GH¢300 to GH¢400 and that for Toyota Highlander had stayed between GH¢450 to GH¢1,500 for the past one year.
“Plugs, for example, have stayed between GH¢150 to GH¢200, oil filter is GH¢20. Engine for Hyundai Grace is hovering around GH¢3,000 and has stayed the same consistently,” he stated.
He mentioned that on the open-market such as Abossey Okai (spare parts hub), buyers always stood to be cheated if they stay at home and send other people to go to the market and buy for them.
“In an open-market such as Abossey Okai, if you want to buy and you go and sit somewhere for someone to move around and buy for you, that person will always increase the price,” he said.
Mr Ampadu urged vehicle owners to go to the market and purchase spare parts on their own to avoid being cheated, as prices of these spare parts were often reduced during Christmas and the New Year festivities to pave way for new stock.
Address benchmark value
The chairman of the association mentioned that its members were also considering increasing prices of their products if government did not intervene in what the spare parts dealers describe as a rise in benchmark value charges at the ports.
He explained that although the government scrapped the one per cent special import levy in 2017, importers had been compelled to pay higher benchmark values at the ports.
“These charges have increased the taxes we pay at the ports for their products,” the chairman added.