Industrialisation agenda will continue — President

BY: Emmanuel Bruce

The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has reiterated the government’s commitment to make Ghana a self-sufficient country capable of producing its own products.

To this end, he said the government would continue with the agenda of rapid industrialisation, with the aim of transforming the structure of the Ghanaian economy from one dependent on production and export of raw materials to a value-added, industrialised economy.

He said under the “One, district- One, factory” (1D1F) initiative, 232 projects were at various stages of implementation.

“These include 76 operating as 1D1F companies, while 112, including five medium-size agro-processing factories, and 63 common user facilities are under construction,” he stated.

The President said this when he laid his first state of the nation address in his second term as president to Parliament on Tuesday.

He noted that the Ghana Integrated Aluminium Development Corporation (GIADEC) had also made ‘good’ progress on the bauxite exploitation programme that would drive the country’s industrial transformation agenda.

“We are in the final stage of an open and transparent investor engagement process, and are in negotiations to select strategic investors to partner GIADEC for the bauxite mining and alumina refinery projects.

“The selected partners will be announced imminently. Similarly, the Ghana Integrated Iron and Steel Development Corporation (GIISDEC) has been set up, and has begun its work in earnest,” he said.

Vehicle manufacturers

President Akufo-Addo also pointed out that the country had succeeded in attracting major global vehicle manufacturers, under the automotive development policy to set up in Ghana.

“So far, Volkswagen has produced 1167 vehicles; SinoTruk, 276 vehicles, and our own Kantanka has produced 400 vehicles. The Japanese conglomerate, Nissan, has also started the assembly of vehicles in the country,” he noted.

Ghana Beyond aid

He said the COVID-19 pandemic had exposed the need to expedite the process of moving Ghana to a situation beyond aid.

He said that was the reason why the government had developed and was currently implementing the GH¢100 billion Ghana CARES‘Obaatampa’ Programme to transform, revitalise and modernise the economy, and return it to high and sustained growth for the next three years.

“The key projects under the CARES Programme include: supporting commercial farming and attracting educated youth into commercial farming; building the country’s light manufacturing sector; developing engineering/machine tools and ICT/digital economy industries; and fast-tracking digitalisation.

Others include developing Ghana’s housing and construction industry; establishing Ghana as a regional hub; reviewing and optimising the implementation of government flagships and key programmes; and creating jobs for young people, as well as expanding opportunities for the vulnerable in society, including persons with disabilities.

He said the establishment of the National Development Bank, under the Ghana CARES programme, was also expected to provide support for businesses in Ghana.

Pick-up in economic activities

The President noted that the government expected economic activity, which had already picked up, to do so even further, following the ongoing vaccination exercise and the easing of restrictions put in place to curb the effects of the disease.