Business News of 2014-05-12

‘Ghana energy sector investor friendly’

The acting Head of Mission of the Ghana Embassy in China, Mr Alfred Gogu Saame, says Ghana has favourable conditions in the energy sector that will enable investors in that sector to benefit greatly from their investments.

He said the government's major energy policy was to achieve universal access to electric power by 2020 and would therefore welcome the production of power by private individuals and organisations.

Mr Saame was briefing officials of the China Electric Power Equipment and Technology Company Limited about Ghana's energy policy at a meeting in Beijing.

The company, which intended to invest in Ghana's energy sector, is a wholly owned subsidiary of the State Grid Corporation of China (SGCC).

Mr Saame explained that the current status of electricity supply in Ghana was 1,980 megawatts and it was the government's policy to increase the total electricity production to 5,000 megawatts by 2020.

"To fill the 3,000 megawatts demand, government is ready for partnership with the private sector. The government is actively promoting independent power production in the country," he stated.

In addition, the government was also promoting renewable energy, particularly solar energy, to complement the shortfall in electricity, which is critical in speeding up the country's rural development.

Mr Saame said in order to encourage the private sector to invest in the renewable energy, a law was passed in 2011 with very generous incentives.

Ghana's continuous stable political environment since 1992, competitive tax rates in the West African sub-region, access to the ECOWAS market with a total population of about 300 million make it a favourable destination for investment.

Mr Saame said there was the provision for customs import duty exemption on plant and machinery imported for investment within any sector and 25 per cent rebate for companies located in the regional capitals.

He added that even though an investment protection agreement between Ghana and China encouraged joint ventures, 100 per cent foreign participation was also allowed.

The General Manager of Number 2 Business Department of China Electric Power Equipment and Technology Company Limited, Mr Xiong Feng, said already the company had presented its pre-qualification documents to bid for the laying of the Kumasi-Bolgatanga electricity transmission line.

He said the company was capable of providing clients with integrated solution as it had rich experience in projects in the energy sector.