Government to Set up PPP Projects Database
The government's efforts to speedily build the country’s infrastructure through partnerships with the private sector had a shot in the arm on March 27, following the approval of US$30 million from the World Bank to kick-start the project.
The credit, the first phase of the PPP credit, is to improve the legislative, institutional, financial, fiduciary and technical framework to generate a pipeline of bankable PPP projects. Such bankable projects are essential for attracting private sector partnership with the government.
The government late last year adopted a new Public Private Partnership (PPP) policy with which it wants to attract private sector investments into bridging the yawning gap in the country’s infrastructure, estimated at US$1.5 billion annually for the next 10 years.
The PPP policy has incentives for private capital as well as a fund from government to match such private investments.
According to the World Bank, the interest-free credit is the first phase in a series set to close a critical funding gap and to leverage urgently needed private sector investment from 2012-2016.
“The PPP programme with the World Bank will combine the skills and resources of both the public and private sectors. For its part, the government will benefit from the expertise of the private sector by making it easier for authorities to focus instead on policy, planning and regulation,” a statement issued by the multilateral development bank said.
PPPs (a perfect example in Ghana being the Ghana Community Services Network Ltd (GCNet), allow private firms to take care of the day-to-day operations of various tasks and free the public sector to enable it concentrate on developing regulations, policy planning, formulation and execution.
The Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Dr Kwabena Duffuor, said “our goal is to attract investors to Ghana’s rapidly growing economy, which we expect will do even better with the injection of additional technical and infrastructural support to the exports sector and PPPs are a cost-effective way to stimulate the infrastructure needs of Ghanaian industry.”
World Bank experts pointed out that Ghana lags behind its Sub-Saharan African peers in terms of private sector investment in infrastructure. Countries such as Benin, DRC, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, Tanzania and Uganda all captured between 1.0 per cent and 1.6 per cent of GDP for infrastructure investment last year.
Mozambique captured more than 3.5 per cent of GDP, while Ghana registered less than one per cent during the same period.
The World Bank Country Director for Ghana, Liberia and Sierra Leone, Mr Yusupha B. Crookes, said “Ghana is an important partner of the World Bank and we are glad to be providing some of the funds needed to make this initiative possible.”
Source: Daily Graphic