PRESIDENT Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has urged investors, especially those in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), to make Ghana their first destination when venturing into Africa for business.
That, he explained, was because the country remained the best place to do business in West Africa and since 2017, the government had put in place measures needed to reduce the cost of doing business.
“Ghana is also the preferred destination for a perfect blend of mineral resource potential, stable regulatory environment, favourable fiscal regime, and socially responsive mining in Africa,” the President added.
He was speaking at the UAE-Ghana Business Forum on the sidelines of the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week last Tuesday.
The President added that measures implemented by the government over the years had not only made the country one of the most business-friendly economies in Africa, but also one of the fastest growing economies in the world between the period 2017- 2020, averaging seven per cent GDP annual rate of growth, up from the 3.4 per cent rate it inherited in 2016.
He further said that the government had been working to restore the nation onto the path of high growth rates experienced prior to the onset of COVID-19 and the Russian-Ukraine war.
According to President Akufo-Addo, Ghana’s decision to seek support of the IMF was in the short term to repair its public finances and give credibility to its balance of payments which had taken a severe hit in very recent times as a result of the global challenges.
“I am confident that we will emerge from this with a stronger and more resilient economy, and advance towards our goal of reaching a Ghana Beyond Aid,” he added.
President Akufo-Addo also said that gold remained one of the pillars of the economy and continued to hold its own as a commodity and a financial asset, adding that by far, it was the most commercially exploited mineral in the country, accounting for more than 90 per cent of the nation’s mineral revenue.
“Indeed, in recent times until 2021, Ghana was the largest producer of gold in Africa and was 6th in the world. We are also major producers of bauxite and manganese, and are, indeed, the 3rd largest producers of these two minerals in Africa,” he said.
The President also said that recently, Ghana had been placed on the global map as one of the few countries that had made significant discoveries of lithium, graphite and iron ore in significant quantities.
Furthermore, he said, the country was working towards a net zero emission target as it collaborated with other relevant stakeholders in employing climate-friendly technologies and practices to achieve a maximum development impact.
“The potential created offers considerable opportunities for UAE investors who possess the capacity to generate value-added benefits through partnership with local companies,” President Akufo-Addo added.
He said “the Minerals and Mining Act of 2006 (Act 703) was supported by regulations passed in 2012, including some few amendments and introductions.
Beacon of democracy
The President further said that with Ghana considered a beacon of stability in Africa with a modern democratic system of governance, an independent Judiciary and a strong attachment to the rule of law “we are determined to make the country an example of rapid economic growth within the context of a well-developed market economy”.
“We, therefore, welcome greatly your contributions to this endeavour,” President Akufo-Addo added.