GHANA’S AMBASSADOR TO U.S. BRIEF AMERICAN INVESTORS
Ghana’s Ambassador to the United States of America (USA), His Excellency Lt. Gen. Joseph Henry Smith (Rtd), has assured US investors that their investment in Ghana is safe because the country has enjoyed peace, stability and security for the past twenty five (25) years and gone through six major elections peacefully and changed governments smoothly.
This, he said, has created a condition, considered very vital for any would be investor searching for investment/trade destination on the African continent.
Ambassador Smith gave the assurance last Tuesday, November 10, 2015 when he addressed the Corporate Council on Africa (CCA) at a Forum organised for members of the Council.
Touching on Ghana’s potentials, Ambassador Smith said the country is endowed with abundant natural resources which continue to attract the attention of global business magnates into all sectors of the Ghanaian economy.
On bureaucratic difficulties hindering investors in Ghana, he said the government has introduce a new investment code that guarantees the freedom of non-Ghanaians to establish and run enterprises in potentially lucrative areas, which previously has been the preserve of indigenous Ghanaians.
These are natural Gas, hydropower, fruit and vegetable farming, food processing which including fish canning, production of agro chemicals, pharmaceuticals and IT, Ambassador Smith added.
He said, the government’s on-going privatization initiatives have also opened up a number of sectors for new business partnerships and investment, notably the Banking, Finance, Insurance, the petroleum and Tele-communication sectors.
Government, Ambassador Smith said is in the process of transforming the structure of the economy to position it as an export driven economy with less focus on imports.
Foreign Direct Investment he said, is key to Ghana’s economic growth agenda, that is why government is improving existing systems and building new structures and procedures which are key in the restoration and maintenance of the economy.
Ghana has made extraordinary progress since independence and especially in recent years, Ambassador Smith explained.
“Our democratic governance, political stability, security and economic growth rate of 7.5 percent over 15 years, constitute a model for other African countries and for that matter, for emerging market around the world”, he added.
Ghana’s Ambassador to the US said, recently, economic growth has declined somewhat and there has been an IMF programme, but that notwithstanding, investor confidence in Ghana continues to grow as a result of very progressive and aggressive measures introduced to stabilise the economy.
Government effort he said, is now geared towards sustaining strong growth in the aftermath and the key to that goal is foreign trade and investment, particularly in the energy and power generation and in infrastructure development.
Speaking on tax incentives which are important to every investor, Ambassador Smith said government has introduced a lot of tax incentives into the Trade and Investment sectors.
Ambassador Smith emphasised the strong bond between the US government and Ghana, saying the government of Ghana has enjoyed a strategic partnership with the United States since 1957.