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Major automobile hub for Accra

BY: Maclean Kwofi
Dr H. Kwesi Ayim Darke(3rd from right), President of the Association of Ghana Industries(AGI) interacting with  Henry Quartey(right), Greater Accra Regional Minister and  Kate Quartey Papafio (2nd from right), a member of the AGI council.
Dr H. Kwesi Ayim Darke(3rd from right), President of the Association of Ghana Industries(AGI) interacting with Henry Quartey(right), Greater Accra Regional Minister and Kate Quartey Papafio (2nd from right), a member of the AGI council.

The government intends to develop an automobile hub at Afienya in the Shai Osudoku District to host all dealers of vehicles spare parts and other accessories.

When completed, the hub, to be known as West Africa Automotive Hub, will host vehicle spare parts dealers currently operating at Abossey Okai and other parts of the Greater Accra Region.

The village envisions among others to develop a 2,500-acre land into a multi-purpose master plan to promote the automotive industry and allied businesses.

It will also provide direct employment for 40,000 artisans and business people and indirectly for another 30,000 in the support sectors.

The village is an initiative under the “Let’s Make Greater Accra Work Again” campaign with the aim to decongest Accra and make it a clean and modern city.

The Greater Accra Regional Minister, Henry Quartey, mooted the idea to members of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) at the Greater Accra Investment Opportunities Conference in Accra on April 22.2

He said the ministry would also champion the passage of a by-law to bar the indiscriminate sale of vehicles and their parts in the national capital when the village was fully developed.

“When completed, it will be a one-stop shop for everything automobile in Accra. It will also make it easy for security agencies to track vehicles that are stolen because once the vehicle gets there, every detail will be checked before it goes through the process,” Mr Quartey said.

The conference

The conference was on the theme "The New Face of Greater Accra: Collaborative Cities and Private Sector to Achieve Accelerated Development."

It created a platform for the leadership of the Regional Coordinating Council of the Greater Accra Region to interact with the umbrella and advocacy body for manufacturers.

Participants were taken through some of the projects and investment opportunities that they can take advantage of such as the West Africa Automotive Village, Modernising Accra and Renewable Energy.

They also visited Agbogbloshie, which has been re-schemed after bulk onion breakers were relocated from there recently.

Spare parts hub

The Abossey Okai spare parts hub is an automotive zone that specialises primarily in the sales of automotive spare parts with peripheral support businesses.

It is not fit for purpose as it lacks basic infrastructure required to promote business and innovation.

The zone currently accommodates up to 17,000 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) that are not scalable due to prevailing conditions.

The zone, however, lacks basic safety, health and environment policies and provisions required to facilitate work.

Best-in-class innovation centre

Mr Quartey said the village the RCC was seeking to build would create a mix-use development space where automotive technology would interact with innovation, business, education and residence in the most coherent manner.

He said it would introduce a best-in-class innovation centre to engineer the future of the automotive industry in Ghana with the village.

The regional minister, therefore, called for strong partnership from the AGI to redevelop the country's capital into an investment hub in the West African sub-region.

Competitive automotive hub

A representative of the RCC, Nii Boye, in a presentation, observed that the village would establish a fully integrated and competitive automotive hub that offers competitive leverage to Accra and Ghana as a whole.

He said it was expected that the hub would transform the economy of the Greater Accra Region to one of service excellence and technological innovation.

“It will also develop a futuristic development master plan that seeks to achieve land-use efficiency and enhance business within the automotive space,” he said.

AGI’s commitment

The President of the AGI, Dr Humphrey Kwesi Ayim-Darke, expressed commitment of the advocacy body to support the government to redevelop Accra.

“The AGI acknowledges the government's efforts to attract and retain investments in Ghana, so we seek to affirm our support for the noble initiative championed by Mr Quartey. The AGI has also followed with keen interest the dynamism of the regional minister and his agenda to transform the capital city and we are determined to extend our support to attain these set goals,” the AGI president said.