A significant number of firms in the United Kingdom (UK) have expressed their readiness to invest in the Ghanaian economy, a senior UK government official, Adam Afriyie, has disclosed.
Mr. Afriyie, Member of the UK Parliament and Trade Envoy for UK Prime Minister Theresa May, said their decision was due to the confidence they had in the country’s bourgeoning economy.
He disclosed this when he led a delegation from the UK-Ghana Chamber of Commerce (UKGCC) to pay a working visit to Vice-President Alhaji Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia.
The visit, aimed at strengthening the existing trade relations between the two countries, was also an opportunity for the UK government and business to discuss how they could support Ghana to achieve its infrastructure development goals.
Ghana is the UK’s fourth largest export market in Sub-Saharan Africa.
“The policies and budget of the Akufo-Addo government have a positive, private sector-driven agenda and the UK is ready to help the government achieve its aims and targets”, Mr. Adam Afriyie indicated.
“The environment is very refreshing. In the past it has been difficult for me to recommend that UK firms invest in Ghana. But so far it’s been good, and long may it continue.”
Vice President Bawumia reiterated the government’s determination to make Ghana the investment destination of choice on the African continent.
“Government’s focus is on encouraging the private sector to help in making Ghana Africa’s most business friendly country.
“Our agenda is to remove the bottlenecks in doing business, reduce the cost of doing business, create a low tax environment for businesses in Ghana, increase the standard of living of Ghanaians, and the budget statement presented by the Finance Minister to Parliament attests to these.”
“We have to manage the economy in a fiscally responsible manner,” the Vice President indicated.
He said the government of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo would strengthen the fight against corruption, especially in the award of contracts, adding, “There will be transparency in the award of contracts.We will make sure we move away from the era of sole sourcing contracts, we will be guided by the law. Rule of law will be at the centre of this government, corruption will not be tolerated. As President Akufo-Addo has earlier indicated, the Right to Information bill will soon be passed by Parliament.”
Mr. Jon Benjamin, UK High Commissioner to Ghana, bemoaned the fact that trade between the two countries had dropped by a third in the last three years and called for a renewed commitment to boost the bilateral relations.
“Ghana is very important to us, and we hope we can grow our trade again,” Mr. Benjamin indicated.
By Yaw Kyei