Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), Yofi Grant, says his outfit is on track to formulating a plan aimed at ensuring that Ghana remains one of the most attractive places to invest on the continent.
According to him, the plan is to help achieve President Akufo-Addo’s aspiration of positioning Ghana as the hub for trade, business and investments in the sub-region and ultimately the continent.
Speaking at the seventh edition of the GIPC’s Economic Counsellors Dialogue themed Doing Business in Ghana, Promoting and Sustaining Investments in the New Normal, Mr Grant noted GIPC’s plan to achieve the set goal is supported by a decade of commendable progress in reforms in the country’s business and investment sector.
“Ghana has over the last 10 years made commendable progress in reforms in the business and investment sector, and we are well on track to formulating a plan and strategy to ensure that we are still one the most attractive places to invest in on the continent and to also achieve the president’s aspiration of positioning Ghana as the hub for the sub-region and Africa,” he averred.
Although Mr Grant made no deliberations on the plan or strategy being formulated to make Ghana one of the best investment destinations on the continent, GIPC’s partnership with UNCTAD and UNDP on the launch of the “SDG Investment Platform” to help bridge the country’s SDG financing gap of $43 billion, can be seen as part of the Centre’s investment attraction strategy.
This is evidenced by the endorsement of the 17 SDGs by government and the use of the SDGs as benchmark in its budgets.
“We have also ensodred the SDGs because if you look at it the SDGs themselves are development goals, from 1 to 17, and it is for that reason that government benchmarked the SDGs in its budget. And this is to ensure that we do not have a separation between the SDGs and our development because they are one and the same and two of them SDGs that we hold dear is SDG 1 – eradication of poverty – and SDG 17 – partnerships and and linkages.”
“And so in view of that we are working with UNCTAD, UNDP, WEF and ITC in facilitating what we call sustainble financing from the SDGs and it is in this regard that we parntedned with the UNDP to come up with the SDG map 2.”
“And we believe that is the way to go because now when you go to the capital market many of the investors are very clear that they want to invest in areas that have sustainability to impact the human development agenda and not just the economy,” noted Mr Grant to Foreign Missions and representatives of foreign businesses present at the Economic Counsellors Dialogue engagement platform.
The SDG Investment Platform recently outdoored by the GIPC and UNDP is meant to provide market intelligence on investment opportunities in Ghana to investors.
The investment platform is to help accelerate SDG-aligned investments in the country by offering insight, data, and impact measurement tools to both local and foreign investors, with the purpose of fast-tracking attainment of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
As noted earlier, it is to bridge a SDG financing gap of $43 billion by correcting the shortfalls and creating a conducive investment climate particularly for SDG related investments to drive the country’s development agenda.
Already, the SDG Investor Map has pointed out Investment Opportunty Areas (IOAs) within five (5) identified priority sectors in Ghana – Agriculture, Infrastructure, Communications, Healthcare and Consumer Goods – where the private sector can explore.
Notable among these IOAs are; construction of affordable housing, provision of internet hotspots for rural areas, digitalization of health care delivery, and scaling up aquaculture.
The SDG Investment Platform has also been identified as an exciting prospect to assuage GIPC’s efforts in raising 100 Billion Cedis through investments as envisaged in the country’s Coronavirus Alleviation and Revitalization of Enterprises Programme (Ghana CARES).
Foreign Missions and representatives of foreign businesses present at the event catalogued their frustrations and concerns with regards to investments into the country. One of such concerned raised by the representative of the UK-Ghana Chamber had to do with the registration of Technology Transfer Agreements with the GIPC.
Representatives from the China-Ghana and Dutch-Ghana Chambers also spoke about the high cost of utility tariffs in the production process and the need to reduce the $200,000 required investment from foreign SMEs wanting to operate in Ghana respectively.
Mr Grant after the engagement assured the Foreign Missions and representatives present that his outfit will see to the resolution of the concerns raised.
The Economic Counsellors Dialogue is an engagement platform with the diplomatic community meant to provide education on GIPCs role in helping foreign investors do business in the country as well as establish a relationship with investors.
It has ovr the years become the platform for strategic engagement with the commercial, trade and economic attaches of foreign missions in Ghana and has helped the GIPC cultivate and grow mutually rewarding relations with foreign missions and investors for the purpose of promoting investments into Ghana.