Consolidated Bank Ghana (CBG) has backed efforts by the government to build a strong partnership with Singapore, in order to increase trade and investment between the two countries.
The bank believes such a partnership will be in the strategic interest of Ghana and deserves to be supported.
The Ministry of Finance last Wednesday held a dinner in honour of the Senior Minister of Singapore Tharman Shanmugaratnam.
The dinner attended by the Vice President, Alhaji Dr Mahamadu Bawumia, and other top government officials and business executives, was part of ongoing engagements to strengthen the relationship between the two countries.
The Singaporean Senior Minister at the dinner described Ghana as a serious country based on the depth and quality of discussions he and his delegation had with Government officials.
“You can tell what a country is like by the seriousness of discussions that take place when you visit and I think Ghana is a very serious country and I say that very sincerely”, Mr Shanmugaratnam stated.
He said Singapore was ready to work together with Ghana for the mutual benefits of both countries.
The Vice President, Alhaji Dr.Bawumia, who was the guest of honour, acknowledged the strides that Singapore has made and said Ghana was determined to learn from the Asian giant to achieve similar feat.
He explained that Ghana would pursue partnership through trade with countries such as Singapore, in line with the President’s agenda of a ‘Ghana Beyond Aid’.
“We want to be friends with Singapore because the brand is very good for Ghana, the experience is very good, and it’s going to be a win-win partnership between our two countries”, the Vice President emphasised.
Dr Bawumia also spoke of gains that Ghana had made in the area of payment systems and said Singapore was impressed with Ghana’s progress and offered to include Ghana in a global payment system that, Singapore had developed to integrate with India and other countries.
The Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, on his part said the success of Singapore was underpinned by effective organisation.
He added that these are lessons that Ghana can learn and apply to also develop.
The Finance Minister said that Ghana was ready to leverage on its hosting of the headquarters of the African Continental Free Trade Area to become a regional hub for key economic activities.
He therefore invited Singapore to invest and do business with Ghana.
The Singaporean delegation led by its Senior Minister held several other interactions including meeting with Ghana’s Economic Management Team.
These engagements are towards a Bilateral Investment Treaty between the two countries.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, who also spoke at the dinner, was hopeful that the Treaty when concluded and ratified, will further increase Singapore’s investments in Ghana.
The Managing Director of CBG, Daniel Wilson Addo, who delivered the welcome address, said on the side lines of the dinner that the bank was poised to facilitate trade between Ghana and Singapore.
He explained that CBG provides world class banking and will leverage on its expertise and understanding of the Ghanaian economy to support Singaporeans seeking to do business in Ghana.
The bank earlier that day held a business forum for the Singaporean delegation, where there were presentations on the bank’s operations as well as another on the tax regime in Ghana by PwC Ghana.
BY TIMES REPORTER