Ghana, Kenya move to deepen trade relations

Mr Awal

Mr Awal

The Minister of Business Development, Mohammed Ibrahim Awal has called for increase in trade between Ghana and Kenya.

He said there were huge investment opportunities in the two countries, which both countries respectively could take advantage of.

Mr Awal who, disclosed this in Accra  when he launched the second edition of the Kenya Trade Expo 2017, said trade between Ghana and Kenya was so low in spite of the fact that two countries had signed more than 78 trade and bilateral agreements in the past five years.

The programme which is being organised by Kenya Trade Expo in partnership with Ghana Investment Promotion Centre, Ministry of Business Development, Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperative of Kenya, Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Horizons Offices, is slated for November 1-4 this year at the Labadi Beach Hotel.

The minister said the government was working to address the challenges that hinder business and trade and in the country to spur private sector growth.

He cited lack of access to credit, delay in acquiring visa and business registration as some of the challenges confronting businesses.

Mr Awal said government was convinced private sector held the key to the development of the country and job creation.

The minister entreated the private sector players in both Ghana and Kenya in the upcoming trade exhibition to find new business partners and expand their business portfolios.

The founder of the Kenya Trade Expo, Leah Nduati Lee in her address expressed concern about the low volume of trade between African countries and particularly between Ghana and Kenya.

“Coming from the land where milk is plentiful, it baffles me why I have to grab a box of milk at the supermarket and read, it came all the way from Europe,” she said.

Mrs Lee said though Ghana was among the three top cocoa producing countries in the world, yet the household chocolate and cocoa brands in Kenya were European and likewise, even though Kenya was the top five tea producing countries globally, yet in Ghana Kenya tea was difficult to find in Ghana.

It was to reverse the low trade between Ghana and Kenya that she initiated the Ghana Kenya Trade Exhibition to promote trade between the two countries.

The programme she said was expected to attract more than twenty Kenyan companies in the areas of agriculture, real estate, Information Communication Technology, education, healthcare, tourism and aviation.

The Chief Executive of the GIPC, Yoofi Grant in a speech read on his behalf commended Mrs Lee for the initiative to promote trade between Ghana and Kenya, saying the programme was in line with the GIPC mandate to promote foreign direct investment into the country and was proud to be associated with the programme.

Mr Grant entreated Kenyan companies operating in the country to register with the GIPC so that they could be exposed to both local and international companies that access the services of the GIPC.

The chairman of the Kenyan community in Ghana said Kenyan businesses saw Ghana as a country full of opportunities and potentials.

He entreated Kenyan companies to take advantage of the upcoming event to explore business opportunities in Ghana and also seek for new business partners.

By Kingsley Asare

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