Ghanaian President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has reiterated the country’s preparedness to lead in the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) initiative.
Speaking at an AfCFTA business forum late Tuesday, the president said policies introduced by the government over the past four years positioned the country to play this role.
“The government’s flagship programs such as the One District One Factory, Planting for Food and Jobs, Planting for Jobs and Export, the Strategic Industries Anchor Initiative, and the port modernization program will position Ghana as the new manufacturing hub of the region,” Akufo-Addo said.
In addition to the new integrated trade facilitation and customs management programs, the president said, these initiatives would transform the Ghanaian economy to position it as a leader in continental free trade arrangements.
“The government is committed to ensuring that adequate financial and human resources are mobilized to make Ghana the new commercial center for trade financing and investment on the continent, a duty we should perform as the host country of the AfCFTA Secretariat,” Akufo-Addo said.
Trading under AfCFTA commenced on Jan. 1, and Ghana freighted its first cargo under the arrangement on Monday.
AfCFTA Secretary-General Wamkele Mene said: “We have embarked on a journey of making AfCFTA work for Africa and make it work for small businesses, women in trade, and young Africans.”
He told the Ghanaian government that the African Union Commission had accepted the proposal to transfer “all functions related to AfCFTA from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to Accra, Ghana.”
“Locating the AfCFTA Secretariat in Ghana is not only a symbol of confidence in the country but also a signal that Ghana is the commercial and trade center of Africa,” Mene said.
Ghanaian Minister for Trade and Industry Allan Kyeremateng said the country “has established an institutional support structure to help the program to succeed.” Enditem