The Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, has called on the international community to support government’s efforts to ensure ‘Ghana Beyond Aid’ becomes a success.
He said ‘Ghana Beyond Aid’ was not for the faint-hearted, but “it is bold, brave, a vision that deserves support, not only from Ghanaians but from all her friends across the world.”
He assured the international business and investment community that ‘Ghana Beyond Aid’ is a policy beyond political conflict and the world can buy into it without fear of uncertain political risks.”
In what appears to woo the international community, the Asantehene said “I will remind you that Ghana is one African country so richly endowed that it once bore the name Gold Coast.”
“And even after centuries of exploitation, the mineral wealth of this country is incalculable and still crying out for development.”
Otumfuo Osei Tutu was addressing a forum dubbed, “World-meets-in-Ghana investors and executive dinner ball”, on Friday, at the Manhyia Palace.
About 31 embassies and high commissioners in Ghana, coupled with several high profile government officials, top business entities both local and foreign, were present.
It was organised by E on 3 Group, a Ghanaian business solution provision company, as part of activities marking the 20th anniversary of the enstoolment of the Asantehene.
Among the embassies and high commissioners, were Angola, Burkina Faso, Brazil, Canada, China, Cuba, Colombia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Latvia, Norway, Netherlands, United Kingdom and South Africa.
According to Otumfuo, any part of Ghana has vast opportunities for lucrative investment and wealth creation, and stressed “our emergence as an oil producing nation has added strength to our economy without taking our attention away from other sectors of the economy.”
He,further,mentioned the vast bauxite resources at Nyinahin that are due for exploration soon with the huge potential for related industries, with agriculture also presenting incalculable possibilities.
The Asantehene noted that Ghana’s economy might not have performed to the optimum of expectations with all the shifts and turns on the political landscape,yet “it has remained relatively resilient.”
“Our 60-year history as an independent sovereign nation is plastered with painful scars of the consequences of our failure to manage our resources with prudence and integrity”
“But, practically every region of Ghana, from the Savanna in the North to the fertile forests in Ashanti, and the rest of the southern regions, we have all the possibilities for creating the granary of the sub-region, to feed ourselves, our industries and to increase our export earnings,” he underlined.
The Asantehene explained that for Ghana to move from Highly Indebted Poor Country (HIPC) to the status of a middle income country in less than a decade” tells you that we have what it takes to break the mould of dependency and achieve the goal our leaders have set for us”.
Though he realised there had been an explosion of high-level investment in modern shopping malls, expansion and modernisation of traditional markets, the Asantehene noted such had been filled almost entirely with imported goods which had been the underlying cause of the constant pressure on the value of the cedi, as more and more shop owners sought foreign exchange to import goods for their shops.
And, wished it should be more appropriate to find ways of injecting more resources to stimulate industrial and agricultural production in the country.
FROM KINGSLEY E.HOPE, KUMASI