Business News of 2014-05-27

Gov't assures Mauritius of good business climate

The Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Haruna Iddrisu, has assured investors from Mauritius of positive returns on their investments in Ghana.

“Do not hesitate to invest in Ghana because the prospects are bright and you stand to reap adequate returns on your investment,” he said.

Mr Iddrisu gave the assurance at a business forum in Accra. The forum provided an opportunity for a 30-man business delegation from Mauritius, led by the Vice Prime Minister of Mauritius, Mr Xavier-Luc Duval, to meet their Ghanaian counterparts.

The visit by the team is a reciprocal gesture to a visit by President John Mahama to Mauritius in December last year and that signals the birth of a renewed relationship and strong bilateral ties between the two countries.

He singled out the financial services sector and said Ghana would welcome major financial institutions from Mauritius that would focus on offshore banking or provide any related financial services.

“There are also opportunities in agro processing and the President has a viable vision for agro processing; whether in the area of processing mineral resources or primary products. That is why we have begun a partnership with Omnicane Sugar Factory of Mauritius to possibly set up a $250 million sugarcane factory in Ghana by the end of this year,” he said.

Earlier this year, Mr Iddrisu led some Mauritius investors to some sites in the Northern Region to assess areas that would be suitable for them to establish a sugar plantation and factory as promised by President Mahama in his State of the Nation Address.

Intra- Africa trade

Mr Duval called for increased intra-Africa trade, since that could guarantee a better future for the continent.

“There is a potential for increased trade, intra-European trade accounted for 70 per cent, intra-Asian trade stood at 62 per cent and intra-South American trade, 26 per cent, whereas intra-African trade is a mere 10 per cent, and this shows the huge potential of increased African trade,” he said.

Ghana-Mauritius trade

Mauritius is Ghana’s 85th largest supplier of imports, supplying 0.01 per cent of Ghana’s imports worth US$1.3 million in 2012, and Ghana’s 100th largest export destination, accounting for 0.001 per cent of exports worth US$0.64 million in 2012.

Ghana has run a trade deficit with Mauritius in every year from 2000 to 2010, with the exception of 2005. Ghana’s exports to Mauritius have not exceeded US$1 million in any year, with the exception of 2005, while imports from Mauritius have averaged US$1.8 million since 2006.