“Since signing the Compact, we, in Ghana, have tackled systematically the structural challenges which have inhibited our drive towards becoming “Africa’s Investment Hub”. This has been done through the implementation of targeted policies across focus areas, such as establishing macroeconomic stability, enhancing domestic revenue mobilization, improving fiscal risk management, and strengthening our business legal and regulatory frameworks to de-risk private investments.”
These were the words of the President of the Republic, Nana Addo-Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Friday, 27th August 2021, when he delivered his remarks at the G20 Compact with Africa Summit in Berlin, capital of the Federal Republic of Germany.
Speaking at the Summit, the President noted that COVID-19 has exposed deep structural fragilities in Africa that require urgent attention, particularly in relation to green growth, climate-conscious industrialisation, and the creation of resilient economies.
“As one of the few economies to have recorded positive growth in 2020, Ghana has, so far, had a strong start to 2021, despite the ravages of the pandemic. With the economy recording a growth rate of 3.1% and 8.9% in the first and second quarters of this year, respectively, reflecting the impact of the Government’s COVID-19 containment measures and recovery interventions, we believe we are on course to return on nation onto the path of steady economic growth,” he said.
In spite of these, President Akufo-Addo indicated that Ghana is still confronted with numerous challenges in the areas of healthcare delivery, access to education, the provision of decent housing, developing our road and railway networks, and funding the GH¢100 billion Ghana CARES programme, aimed at revitalising the economy.
He added that with public debt levels in Ghana, currently at 77.1% of GDP, Government has limited the scope for growth through debt-funded large public investment programmes, bringing into sharp focus the importance of interventions such as the Compact with Africa initiative.
“I am particularly happy that, in the past year, Volkswagen (VW) has partnered with a Ghanaian company to establish a vehicle assembly facility. MoUs have also been signed with Voith Hydro Holding for the supply of technologies for the construction of a hybrid solar-hydro power plant attached to the Bui Dam project, and with Robert Bosch Packaging for the supply of technologies for the construction of a vaccine factory,” the President said.
He continued, “Ghana is also grateful for the support received so far under the Compact towards the establishment of the Development Bank of Ghana (DBG). The vision for the Development Bank is guided by the history of KFW, which has played an essential part in Germany’s post-World War 2 recovery experience, and we are optimistic that DBG, when launched, will efficiently deploy resources across key business sectors, fulfil our ambition of rapidly creating a prosperous economy that offers opportunities for all, and accelerate Ghana’s path towards economic and social transformation.”
President Akufo-Addo was confident that Ghana’s ongoing partnership under the CWA “will guide us, as we work towards effective economic recovery from the debilitating effects of the pandemic”.
With other African Heads of State present, he urged them to help build an Africa, capable of safeguarding her environment, founded on the creativity, enterprise and industry of her citizens; and an Africa that welcomes investments, and trades in the global market place at the high end of the value chain.
To the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, who was presiding over her last Compact meeting, President Akufo-Addo wished her a very fond farewell “as she goes off into a well-deserved retirement, after sixteen (16) years of arduous, productive work as German Chancellor. Frau Merkel, you will be sorely missed by many in Africa, especially by those of us in Ghana.”