Portuguese delegation explores trade, partnership prospects

BY: Jessica Acheampong & Mclean Kwofi
Ms Maria Luis Correia
Ms Maria Luis Correia

A business delegation comprising members of the Portuguese National Association of Metallurgical and Electromechanical Industries (aneme) have visited Ghana to explore trade and partnership opportunities.

Organised under the auspices of aneme and the CH Business Consulting Ghana, the delegation also focused on building institutional relationship with key stakeholders in the business community, in anticipation of future commercial trade.

Led by the Director General of the Association, Ms Maria Luis Correia, the delegation, which comprised industries in the metal and electromechanical industries in Portugal, met with their Ghanaian counterparts at a business-to-business meeting on June 5.

In an interview with the Daily Graphic after the meeting, Ms Correria said the sector was key in exports from Portugal and the association, which had been supporting the sector for more than 50 years, was always looking for new partnership and trade opportunities.

“One of the things we do is to support the companies to increase their international relations with companies. In Ghana, we want cooperation between institutions, and supporting trade between companies of both countries,” she said.

The areas of focus for the delegation included agriculture and forestry, mining and quarrying, manufacturing, construction and public works, electricity, gas and water supply, water and waste treatment and maintenance.

The metal and electromechanical sector, she explained, was one of the main drivers of economic activity in Portugal, accounting for more than 30 per cent of national exports. In the last decade, exports increased to more than 40 per cent.

Ghana is key

A Partner of CH Business Consulting, Portugal, Ms Lurdej Moraij, said her job as a partner was to support Portuguese companies through the development process to access new markets.
She said although some of the companies had commercial relations with Ghana, it was relatively small and the delegation would help expand the relation.
“ Some of the companies have commercial relations with Ghana but it is so small and we think that Ghana is a good investment destination for our companies and we have to build relations with them,” she said.

The visit by the delegation, she explained, was part of a programme co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund of the European Union (EU) and aimed at strengthening economic and social cohesion in the EU.

Visit to Trade Ministry

The Team Leader in charge of Export Trade and Investment at the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MoTI), Mr Ebo Quayson,  urged the Portuguese businesses to use Ghana as a gateway to expand their reach to more consumers on the African continent.

He said Ghana stood out as a beacon for safe investment in sub-Saharan Africa because of its strong Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth forecast and stable political environment which was conducive for business.

Mr Quayson made the comment when the business delegation paid a courtesy call on him at the ministry in Accra.

The Director, in charge of Investor Services of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), Mr Edward B. Ashong-Lartey, also underscored the need for the Portuguese to invest by setting up their operations in the country.