Date: 2019-02-08

About twenty indigenous agri-business owners were taken through a one-day investment promotion seminar on a 3-year EU technical assistance project at the La Palm Royal Beach Hotel in Accra.

The project, which began in 2018 and will end in 2021, involved technical assistance to support the implementation of investment promotion and business linkages, funded by the European Union and being implemented in partnership with the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI). It covers three areas: investment promotion, business linkages and export development.

Opening the workshop, AGI President, Dr. Yaw Adu-Gyamfi, indicated the commitment of AGI in addressing the needs of the business community through stakeholder consultations and policy advocacy. He commended Government for its flagship policies such as 1D1F, Planting for foods and Jobs and many others. According to him, policies like planting for foods and jobs had improved the food production in the country and urged the agro-business companies to take advantage of this positive outcome and expand.

Dr. Adu-Gyamfi was also grateful to the Bank of Ghana for reducing the policy rate to 16% and pleaded with the commercial banks to respond and grant financial assistance to companies at an affordable rate. He pleaded with the EU Ambassador through the Technical Assistant Team to come up with business development or upgrading business strategies to improve the SME’s to the level of attracting potential investors.

In a speech, the EU Ambassador commended the good initiatives taken by the Government of Ghana to improve the agro-business sector. On this, she shared the success story of Ghana exporting its traditional good and minerals to Europe and other parts of the world. She indicated that the high-interest rate and high import taxes make it difficult for business to strive. In her final words, she thanked AGI for hosting the project and assured the participants for supporting their business to grow.  

Taking participants through the scope of the project, a member of the project team, Mr. Yves Van Frausum stated that the project targets private Ghana-based businesses that seek to increase exports or achieve a new dimension of internationalization through partnerships with global enterprises. He disclosed that such businesses should be in operation for 3 years or more, with a turnover or total assets exceeding US$500,000, and must have at least 20 employees of which 3 are executives and middle-level managers.