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Government working on Amazon operating in Ghana – Finance Minister



Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta

The Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) is working assiduously to attract Amazon to Ghana, Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, has said.

According to the Finance Minister, the move was to deepen the technological entrepreneurial ecosystem for Ghanaian entrepreneurs.

Addressing the country on the measures being introduced by the government to prop up the economy and create jobs for the youth in line with social media campaign protest dubbed “FixTheCountry”, Mr Ofori-Atta said aside Google setting up its regional Artificial Intelligence Centre in Accra, Twitter recently announced to establish its Africa Headquarters in Accra.

He said the decision of such global tech giants to come to Ghana demonstrated the confidence investors had in the Ghanaian economy.

Mr Ofori-Atta said the presence of Amazon in Ghana would help create jobs for the youth and prop up the Ghanaian economy.

He said since assuming office, the government had worked hard to put the economy on a better footing and positioned it to be hub of trade in Africa.

Mr Ofori-Atta indicated that the country won the bid to host the Secretariat of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), positioning Ghana and Ghanaian businesses as the gateway partner and spearhead Ghana as a hub for the Africa region.

“Until we were hit by the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, we were on course to achieving the objective to stabilise and grow the economy, create jobs especially for the Youth, modernise, digitise and formalise the economy, provide social protection for the vulnerable and create a safe and secure environment for citizens and businesses to thrive,” the Finance Minister said.

Mr Ofori-Atta opined that the government implemented flagship initiatives such as 1 District 1 Factory, 1 Village 1 Dam, Planting for Food & Jobs, and IPEP in the Real Sector to accelerate economic activities and help create jobs.

The Finance Minister said the government as part of measures to transform the economy, implemented several initiatives to digitalize the economy.

“We implemented several digitalisation programmes to transform the economy, formalise the informal sector, and increase efficiency in public service delivery,” Mr Ofori-Atta stressed.

Finance Minister mentioned some of the initiatives as the issuance of over 15 million National ID Cards, the digital addressing system for over seven million homes, mobile money payment interoperability system, and the introduction of the paperless port system.

The others, Mr Ofori-Atta stated were the automation of driver’s license and vehicle registration, renewal of National Health Insurance Scheme registration, land records digitisation with block-chain technology, and automation of passport application,” Mr Ofori-Atta said.

“After four years of implementing these prudent measures, the Ghanaian economy witnessed a turnaround. Between 2017 and 2019, the economy grew by seven per cent on average in response to Government’s prudent management of the economy and implementation of government flagship programmes, being one of the highest and sustained growth periods,” the Finance Minister stressed.

That Mr Ofori-Atta observed culminated in a single-digit inflation of 7.9 percent, reduced fiscal deficits with three consecutive years of primary surpluses, relatively stable exchange rate, significant improvement in the current account with three successive years of trade surpluses, strong foreign exchange reserve buffers covering 4 months of import cover.

The Finance Minister pledged that government would continue to work to put the economy on a better footing and bring relief to the citizens.

Source: Ghanaian Times


Here is how the cedi is performing against major foreign currencies as of June 21





The cedi traded against the dollar at a mid-rate of 5.7512

• The cedi traded against the dollar at a mid-rate of 5.7512

• It’s trade value against the Pounds Sterling stands at 7.9450 mid-rate

• The Euro, however, went up at a mid-rate of 6.8242

On the interbank board today, June 21, 2021, the Ghana Cedi is trading against the dollar at a buying price of 5.7483 and a selling price of 5.7541 as compared to last Friday’s trading of a buying price of 5.7483 and a selling price of 5.7541 to open the 25th trade week of the 2021 fiscal year.

Against the Pound Sterling, the cedi is trading at a buying price of 7.9407 and a selling price of 7.9493 as compared to last Friday’s trading of a buying price of 8.0040 and a selling price of 8.0126.

The Euro is trading at a buying price of 6.8208 and a selling price of 6.8275 as compared to last Friday’s trading of a buying price of 6.8468 and a selling price of 6.8536.

The South African Rand is trading at a buying price of 0.4023 and a selling price of 0.4027 as compared to last Friday’s trading of a buying price of 0.4071 and a selling price of 0.4075.

The Nigerian Naira is trading at a buying price of 71.2390 and a selling price of 71.3642 as compared to last Friday’s trading of a buying price of 71.3069 and a selling price of 71.3312.

For the CFA, it is trading at a buying price of 96.0757 and a selling price of 96.1701 as compared to last Friday’s trading of a buying price of 95.7098 and a selling price of 95.8049.

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15 years without research vessel worries fishers





Fishing vessel

Fisher associations in Ghana are worried about the unavailability of a research vessel to conduct examinations on the behaviour of the country’s fish species, particularly in closed seasons.

The associations – comprising the National Fisheries Association of Ghana, the Ghana National Canoe Fishermen Council, Ghana Industrial Trawlers Association and the Ghana Inshore Fishers Association – are intensifying their request for the vessel, as the 2021 fishing closed-season is set to begin from July 1 to August 31.

Globally, fisheries research vessels are used to survey and monitor fish populations in the world’s oceans. The results of their investigations help scientists understand the status and development of fish stocks, and also define measures for their protection.

“The implication is that as fish stocks are expected to multiply and replenish in the closed-season, the biggest threat in the season is migration of these fish into other territories, particularly Togo and Ivory Coast. A research vessel will monitor all these activities in the ocean including water temperatures and conditions of phytoplankton, which serves as food for the fish,” president of the Ghana Inshore Fishers Association, Joseph Quaye, told the B&FT.

Unfortunately, the associations indicated that Ghana has been without a fisheries research vessel for the past 15 years. The situation, according to industry stakeholders, is contributing significantly to Ghana’s depleting fish stocks and worsening the illegal fishing burden confronting the country.

In 2017, government hinted at plans to acquire a research vessel to probe Ghana’s territorial waters domain in order to discover the amount of fish species in it.

Named the Dr. Fridtjof Nansen Research Vessel, it was expected to dock in the country on September 13, 2017 and inaugurated on September 14 the same year. However, till date, Ghana does not have any such advanced research vessel.

Meanwhile, the Director of the Regional Maritime Centre, Professor George Wiafe, has also confirmed that the current research vessel at the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture became unworthy for sea since 1995.

However, the Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Mavis Hawa Koomson, told B&FT that government is at advanced stage of procuring a modern, sophisticated fisheries research vessel for the sector.

The minister, who was speaking at the announcement ceremony of the 2021 fishing closed-season in Accra, also revealed that apart from the vessel, government, by close of year will procure four patrol boats to enhance monitoring, control and surveillance activities in Ghana’s marine waters. “These are major strides we are embarking on to fight against all forms of illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing activities in our waters, and to protect our stocks,” she said.


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Heads of State agree to push new ECOWAS single currency to 2027





Dr Jean-Claude Kassi Brou is the President of the ECOWAS Commission

• A new roadmap towards the ECOWAS single currency has been adopted

• The single currency is expected to take off by 2027

• The agreement was arrived at during the 59th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS in Accra

After many years of planning, a new roadmap to launch the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) single currency in 2027, has been adopted.

This agreement, according to Dr. Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, President of the ECOWAS Commission, was arrived at by all Heads of State of ECOWAS at the 59th Ordinary Summit in Accra, yesterday, reports the GNA.

“Due to the shock of the pandemic, the heads of state had decided to suspend the implementation of the convergence pact in 2020-2021,” Dr. Brou said.

“We have a new road map and a new convergence pact that will cover the period between 2022 and 2026, and 2027 being the launch of the Eco,” he said.

He also added that the Heads of State had requested of the ministerial committee to take a look at the new roadmap and the convergence pact, considering the lessons the coronavirus pandemic has brought on the sub-region.


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