President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has called for enhanced public-private partnerships to deal with financing gaps in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
He said financing challenges, if not addressed, through increased collaborations between the government, private sector, academia and civil society groups, would impede the realisation of the 2030 goals.
He said these in a speech read on his behalf by Professor George Gyan Baffour, Minister of Planning at the Accra SDGs Investment Fair in Accra yesterday on the theme: “Sustainable Development Financing: Building Mutually Beneficial Partnerships.”
The collaborations, he added, were necessary to equip current and future workforce with the requisite tool set to be able to compete in future job markets.
“Agenda 2030 calls for increased partnerships between stakeholders including government, private sector, academia, civil society organisations and research to ensure that we make the right choices from now to enhance the quality of life for our people and lead to rapid socioeconomic growth and development of the continent,” he stated.
Currently, he explained that, financial flows fell short of what was required for implementation of the agenda adding that “we must do all we can to generate the needed resources for sustainable development.”
“The global economy, it is said, requires US$89 trillion in infrastructure investments across cities, energy and land-use systems and US$4.1 trillion in incremental investment for low carbon transition in order to enable the delivery of the 1.5-degree celsius target under SDG 13.
The African Development Bank (ADB) reports that the annual infrastructure financing gap in Africa alone is US$100 billion. The multilateral system is under strain”, he added.
In response to these challenges, President Akufo-Addo noted that Ghana had focused on increased mobilisation of domestic public resources and the development and strengthening of regulatory frameworks that effectively align domestic and international private business and finance with public goals
To consolidate the economic growth achieved so far, he stated that government’s economic policies was anchored on driving foreign direct investment, digitisation, infrastructure development, domestic revenue mobilisation, financial support to local enterprises, science and technology and international financial services centre.
Additionally, micro, small and medium-scale enterprises would be prioritised to serve as the driving force of the economy, create employment and wealth and enable innovation and human empowerment, he indicated.
Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, said the fair was to stir up more initiatives and collaborations, guided by the concept of shared value, to create value for society and enable the private sector to realise significant returns on their investments.
He noted that present global challenges including immigration and climate change reiterated the need for local, regional and international collaborations to address the problems to the benefit of both the developed and developing countries.
He called on local and foreign businesses and financial institutions to support the financing of the SDGs by partnering government and injecting funds into private sector projects which has the potential for shared value.
Such support, he explained could also be in the form of leading discussions to tackle the challenges with the global financial architecture, which disadvantages the countries in the South.
Mr Ofori-Atta said African youths were ready for technical and financial supports which could promote their innovative creations and called on governments in the continent and investors to enable them to contribute to economic growth.
BY CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS