Ghanaians have been called upon to be open minded and accommodating with foreigners who invest in the country since the country does not have the capital, technology and human resources to develop on her own.


“What is necessary is to ensure that we are wise in our negotiations such that at the end of the day such investments could benefit our country and people more meaningfully but not end up as a sale of our destiny into the hands of foreign investors.”

Ghana’s ambassador to China, Mr Edward Boateng gave the advice in assessing the relevance of the China International Imports Exposition which ended in Shanghai at the weekend. The theme for the exposition was, ‘New era shared future’ with Ghana focussing on ‘Ghana your preferred destination for investment in Africa’  for her participation.


Mr Boateng said the organisation of the fair meant, “China was thinking and planning ahead to find the means of meeting the needs of her people because without opening up China would not be able to feed her people.”


Mr Boateng said although Ghana and Africa in general are endowed with natural resources “without investment to transform these resources into economic products, they would not benefit our people”.


He pointed out for example that we needed investment in the hospitality industry and said if foreigners invest in hotels, the investors could not take away such infrastructure but underlined the need for the right partners.


He noted that China demanded from Germany certain conditions which helped to accelerate her progress and these included infrastructural development, technology transfer and human resource development which have enabled China to take control of her destiny.


“Similarly we need to look for our best interest, go into negotiations better prepared and more focussed and do away with middlemen in loan agreements,” he said and pointed out that “if the loans and investments from China do not work it is not because it is from China but more because we bargained cheaply and did not do any quality work”.


Mr Boateng said the fact that China invited and supported Ghana to participate in the expo meant China saw something good about Ghana and there was the need for the country to take advantage of the goodwill and enter the Chinese market more purposefully and capture the market.


He said as a first step Ghana must focus on cocoa products and once that gained root, others could follow but stressed that efforts must be made to meet orders as a means of getting entrenched in the bigger Asian market using China to leapfrog.


Mr Boateng said the Chinese are very good at organising and implementing policies and programmes and noted “they have the unique ability to plan, organise and implement programmes and projects to the minutest detail”.

He said another qualitative attitude that we could learn from the Chinese was their management of time and punctuality noting, “they use time as an economic resource whilst we waste time ad a social issue”.

By Yaw Boadu Ayeboafoh, Shanghai

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