President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says Ghana has moved away from the dark days of uncertainties that clouded its path towards progress and prosperity.
According to the President, the last 29 years of democratic governance under the 4th Republic have generally been the period of the greatest economic growth in Ghana’s history.
Delivering a statement on “Ghana Day” at the ongoing Dubai Expo 2020 yesterday, President Akufo-Addo noted that “Our engagement at the Expo is themed on opportunity, because we are a nation of unquestionably attractive opportunities.”
According to President Akufo-Addo, Ghana is, today, the safest country in West Africa, is the largest recipient of foreign direct investment in West Africa, and is ranked 3rd in the Ease of Doing Business Index in West Africa.
“We are the new commercial capital of Africa by virtue of our hosting of the Secretariat of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), we are the 2nd largest cocoa producer in the world, we are the largest producer of gold in Africa, we are endowed with considerable deposits of bauxite, iron ore, manganese, lithium, oil and gas, diamonds, and timber, and we are geographically closer than any other country to the centre of the planet,” the President added.
He continued, “We are a country where investments are secure and protected under a governance system where an independent judiciary upholds the rule of law and respect for private property rights.”
Stressing that Ghana is “Ready for Business,” President Akufo-Addo noted that Government is determined to build a business-friendly economy that will enable Ghana get to the stage where the exploitation of the opportunities that are available will help her build an optimistic, self-confident and prosperous nation.
“Indeed, prior to the onset of COVID-19, Ghana, in 2017, 2018 and 2019 that is during my first term in office, recorded annual average GDP growth rates of seven per cent making our economy one of the fastest growing in the world at the time. At the height of the pandemic, in 2020, we were, indeed, one of the few countries to record positive growth,” he said.
Through the one hundred-billion-cedi (GH¢100 billion) economic recovery programme, dubbed the Ghana CARES ‘Obaatanpa’ Programme, the economy grew at a provisional 5.2 per cent in the first three quarters of 2021, with a projected growth rate of 5.6 per cent for 2021.
“We appear to be on the path of sustained economic recovery. We still, nevertheless, have some important challenges, but we see these challenges as opportunities which serve as catalysts for growth and the realisation of Government’s transformational agenda. This agenda is hinged, primarily, on creating space for the private sector to thrive, thereby growing the jobs that our young people need,” he added.
President Akufo-Addo stated that policies such as 1-District-1-Factory and the development of strategic anchor industries, such as the emerging automotive industry and the co-ordinated exploitation of our significant bauxite and iron ore deposits, the agricultural expansion through the programme for Planting for Food and Jobs, targeted infrastructural development, especially of roads and railways, and promoting access to digital technology are serving as the main avenues for job creation.
“We have been successful at removing some of the constraints of Ghanaian life that have been sources of frustration in conducting business. As part of the process of formalising the economy, we have, amongst others, implemented a digital property addressing system, issued biometric national identification cards to residents this year, so that every resident will have a unique identification number, and ensure paperless transactions at our ports,” he added.
BY TIMES REPORTER