Business News of 2014-07-18

Cedi fall affecting businesses — GCCI President

The President of the Ghana Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI), Mr Seth Adjei Baah, has stated that businesses in Ghana are recording losses due to the depreciation of the cedi.
He said the cedi was reported to have depreciated by almost 30 per cent against the major foreign trading currencies since January this year and stated that the situation had negatively affected the growth of businesses in Ghana.
While admitting that various interventions by governments over the years to halt the depreciation of the cedi, Mr Baah said those measures had not been sustainable. Mr Baah made these remarks at the second edition of the chamber’s breakfast meeting with chief executive officers in Accra held on the theme: “Finding lasting solutions to the perennial depreciation of the cedi-the role of the private sector”.
According to Mr Baah, the depreciation of the cedi had an effect on employment and the success of the economy and pledged the chamber’s commitment to partner the government to halt the fall of the cedi.
Government’s investment
In his address, the Director of the Export Division of the Ministry of Trade and Industry, Mr John Hawkings-Asiedu, said the ministry was implementing policies such as the Export Trade, Agricultural and Industrial Development Fund (EDAIF) to increase exports.
In that regard, Mr Hawkings-Asiedu said the government this year was supporting the pharmaceutical, livestock and cashew industries to boost their production for exports. He added that the private sector was a key partner in government’s effort to expand the economy and gave the assurance that the ministry would partner the chamber to promote indigenous businesses.
Balance of trade
The Minister of State in charge of Public Private Partnership, Mr Rashid Pelpuo, said it was important for businesses in Ghana to increase production for exports, adding that the current balance of trade deficit was a factor contributing to the depreciation of the cedi.
He said the country needed to focus on the production and exportation of processed and finished materials to reduce the current high rate of importation. Mr Pelpuo also stated that the government was embarking on a lot of long-term initiatives to transform the various sectors of the economy.
Some participants in the forum stressed the need for the cedi to be stabilised to improve the current economic conditions in Ghana.
Source: graphic.com
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