Business News of 2014-06-12

Dubai Chamber explores Ghana's investment potential

As part of its efforts to consolidate bilateral ties between Dubai's business community and their African counterparts, Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry in cooperation with the Ghana Consulate General and support of the Economist Intelligent Unit hosted the Country Focus Briefing: The Republic of Ghana on Wednesday.

The briefing was attended by H.E. Abdul Rahman Saif Al Ghurair, Chairman, Dubai Chamber, Haruna Iddrisu, Minister, Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ghana, Mr. Tony Kutteng, Deputy Consul General, Consulate General of Ghana in Dubai, Dr. Seth Adjei Baah, President, Ghana Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mawuena Trebarh, CEO, Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), and a large number of business leaders from the UAE and Ghana.

In his welcome address, H.E. Abdul Rahman Saif Al Ghurair, Chairman, Dubai Chamber, highlighted Ghana as a rewarding option for Emirati investment. This is the reason Dubai Chamber is soon going to open its representative office in the Ghanaian capital Accra, which will serve as a gateway for UAE investments in the promising market of the country.

He called upon Dubai businesses to enhance bilateral ties with African businesses, particularly Ghana in the sectors of mining, energy, retail, agriculture and banking, which Dubai companies have good experience in, especially in the area of retail banking services.

H.E. Al Ghurair further emphasized that Ghana currently occupies 34th rank on Dubai's list of top trading partners as the non-oil trade between the two rose to AED8.9 billion in 2013, registering a 4.7% growth in comparison to 2012.

He also highlighted Dubai's status of a gateway to the region stating that the emirate serves as a fitting platform for international investments to the Ghanaian market while the new Chamber office will help Dubai businesses to expand into the promising market of the African country.

H.E. Al Ghurair invited the visiting delegation to attend the Dubai Chamber -organised Africa Global Business Forum 2014 in October, which he said will promote Dubai's role as a gateway to Africa and explore new business prospects between Africa and Dubai.

In his keynote address, H.E. Haruna Iddrisu, Minister, Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ghana, stated his country is the best place to do business in Africa and is a potential market to reach out to rest of Africa and the 350 million consumers in the region. It is also one of the largest gold producers in Africa, he said.

H.E. Iddrisu further stated that his country was looking forward to developing a strong bilateral relationship with Dubai in light of the Ghanaian government's policy in encouraging public, private sector partnership. He said that Ghana is an excellent option for investment due to its political stability and abundance of natural resources.

He stressed that Ghana can serve as a centre for UAE investments in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) while Dubai businesses can explore investment opportunities across a number of lucrative sectors in Ghana, including infrastructure development, energy, tourism, mining and agriculture and agri-processing as well as petrochemical, aluminium and gold smelting industries, said H.E. Iddrisu.

On his part, Hon. Dr. Seth Adjei Baah, President, Ghana Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said that his many visits to Dubai has always impressed him as the emirate has set an example for Ghana to emulate, as he expressed his country's desire to benefit from Dubai's experience in tourism, information technology, financial services, telecommunications and construction, stating that his country has a shortage of up to 1.7 million housing units.

Mrs. Mawuena Trebarh, CEO, Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), highlighted Ghana's investment potential stating that the country stands amongst the top five destinations for doing business in Sub-Saharan Africa and according to the World Doing Business Report 2014is the best destination for ease of doing business in West Africa.

Also during the briefing, the Economist Intelligence Unit of the Economist magazine gave an introductory presentation on the Outlook for Ghana highlighting the country's business environment and market opportunities.