Ghana's youth make future bright - German Chancellor
The visiting German Chancellor, Olaf Scholz, has described Ghanaian youth, especially those in tertiary institutions, as fascinating, with ideas and innovations capable of driving the country towards the path of development.
“I can tell you with such youth, you don’t have to worry about the future of your country.
It was really very impressive.
I have no doubt that the next generation has what it takes to continue that path of development and innovation for your country,” he indicated.
Chancellor Scholz, who is the second German Chancellor to visit the country within the last seven years, said this yesterday during a lunch in his honour at the Jubilee House as part of his two-day official visit to Ghana.
He was received at the forecourt of the Jubilee House as he inspected a guard of honour by the Ghana Army.
He then mounted the dais and took two national salutes before and after the inspection.
Chancellor Scholz was escorted to the Glass Door of the Jubilee House and was received by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
After an exchange of pleasantries, the two heads of state stood behind their national flags for the official photographs.
The two again went straight to the President’s office on the fourth floor of the Presidency for a tete-a-tete and later engaged in bilateral talks involving the ministers of Finance, Energy, Foreign Affairs, Food and Agriculture, Defence and their German counterparts.
Earlier, Chancellor Scholz had visited and interacted with students of Ashesi University in the Eastern Region.
He indicated that he had a discussion on the students’ perspective for the future “and these discussions with these young and bright students had been impressive”.
He noted that innovations were the holding block of the future of Ghana and Germany which were “also the corner stone of our relations”.
“Ghana, with its excellent universities, is our key partner in Africa for science and research”.
He mentioned the German West Africa Centre for Public Health and Pandemic Research or African Institute of Mathematical Sciences located in Ghana as the places where the future was made, “and we are making it together”.
Chancellor Scholz announced that he was accompanied by a high-level business delegation who have had intense talks with their Ghanaian counterparts.
He noted that they discussed topics crucial for the further development of Ghana such as electricity grid, power and how to use new techniques to develop infrastructure.
“There were a lot of things to be done and it is so important that both countries are very much working on developing market economy and private investment, and creating the right environment for achieving these.
Compact with Africa
Chancellor Scholz indicated that Ghana was an indispensable and active member in the German Compact with Africa and he looked forward to the next meeting which was coming on in Berlin in a couple of weeks’ time.
Ghana, he added, as a committed member in the global scale, manifested its status as a member of the UN Security Council and its participation in important global issues, noting that: “Our countries believed in democracy and stood up for rule-based international order and the implementation of the UN Charter”.
He indicated that African countries must have ample and equal representation in an international body and organisation such as the UN Security Council to be afforded the opportunity and power to speak with a louder voice.
He described AU’s inclusion into the G20 as a good development and added that his country supported the move for permanent African seats in the UN Security Council as President Akufo-Addo had been advocating.
President Akufo-Addo said through the G20 Compact with Africa initiated under the German Presidency to promote private investment in Africa, Ghana has since 2017 received 206 million Euros from Germany which had been used for expansion and modernisation of the electricity grid, setting up green credit line for renewable energy and energy efficiency and for the establishment of the Development Bank of Ghana.
He expressed the hope that the challenges that had bogged the commencement of Siernens lines under the compact would be resolved soon for the project to take off.
He said Ghana valued its relationship and friendship with Germany and expressed the hope that the two nations and their people would continue to deepen the bond of cooperation.
Relations date back to the 17th Century but formal diplomatic ties were sealed soon after Ghana's independence in 1957, and 66 years on Ghana remains Germany's fourth largest trading partner in sub-Saharan Africa.
President Akufo-Addo noted that the Ghanaian-German centre for Migration, Merian Centre for Advanced Studies at the University of Ghana, and the Kofi Annan International Peace-Keeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) were an example of German assistance to Ghana.
He expressed gratitude for the scholarships offered to Ghanaian students to pursue higher academic laurels in Germany and the hospitality for over 40,000 Ghanaians living in that country.