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May 15, 2013

Government building on existing foundation for private sector development


The World Economic Forum’s Global Competitive Index 2012/2013 has ranked Ghana as the 4th investment destinations in sub-Saharan Africa and 3rd among the five top recipient of Foreign Direct Investment into Africa.

Vice President Paa Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur, who disclosed this in Accra on Tuesday, stressed that with the attainment of such ranking; the new challenge is how to stay ahead of the competition and build on the existing foundation for the private sector to thrive.

The Vice-President said this during the visit of Mr David Johnston, the Governor General of Canada to Ghana.

The visit is aimed at providing opportunity for the two countries to strengthen their commercial and education ties.

Vice President Amissah-Arthur said the country recognized that, to provide infrastructure for the further growth of the economy, it is necessary to mobilize the confidence of the major resource in the country for the domestic private sector.

He said peace and stability, the guarantees of personal security for the residents and the strong democratic institutions the country has built, were vital parts of the business-friendly infrastructure which the country is working assiduously to maintain.

He said government has invited the support of the private sector in the expansion of infrastructure in energy generation, transport, road, rail and ports and in the new framework that sought to promote private participation.

Vice-President Amissah-Arthur noted that Canada had been a key source of direct investment to Ghana - investment in petroleum, power, mining, telecommunications and infrastructure.

Mr Johnston was elated for the visit, stressing that, Ghana is a model of democracy, human rights, peace and security, and that, there are over 120 Canadian firms active in the country from mining and infrastructure to Information and Communication Technology and education.

“We provide Ghana with goods and services varying from blackberries to drill bits, from office furniture to wheat, from railway equipment to trucks and have a Canadian school called Canadian Independent College, which offers Kindergarten to Grade 12 education in Accra,” he added.

He said trade between the two countries has increased by more than 220 per cent between the years 2000 and 2012 and that the business relations are primarily oriented towards the exchange of goods and services, infrastructure and investment in natural resources.

“Both Ghana and Canada are blessed with abundant natural resources, an inheritance which presents us with a great opportunity and a great responsibility, and as we work together to extract those resources and develop them, we must be wise environmentally for our own well-being and that of our children and grandchildren” he added.

Mr Jonston said with the commitment to democracy, the rule of law and respect for human rights, he is confident that business partnerships between the two countries will continue to flourish and encouraged the country to support greater partnership between academia and business in nurturing young people.

Source: GNA