Make Ghana an export powerhouse – Adu Boahen tells Ghana Exim Bank
The Minister of State at the Finance Ministry, Charles Adu Boahen, has asked the Ghana Export-Import Bank (Ghana Exim Bank) to support Ghanaian manufacturers to boost export.
The minister made this call at the inauguration of the board of directors of the Ghana Exim Bank in Accra on Monday, August 16.
He noted that to drive the government’s ‘Ghana Beyond Aid’ agenda, it was important for the country’s export to be widened.
To this end, he charged the board to identify Ghanaian manufacturers with the potential to export and develop strategies to attract and assist them in obtaining long term financing support specifically for export markets.
According to Mr Boahen, this would boost Ghana’s export base and foreign exchange earning capacity.
He pointed out that the government is currently implementing a policy to build an ecosystem that would provide an efficient way to support and finance at least 100 Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
This is in addition to creating a credit boom that would provide new jobs for the youth in line with phase two of the Ghana COVID-19 Alleviation and Revitalisation of Enterprise Support (Ghana CARES) programme.
“It is the expectation of government that the Ghana Exim will refocus its attention on outward growth strategies and take strategic steps that would drive the country’s export expansion agenda to reverse the contraction of US$7.4 billion we witnessed during the first half of 2020,” Mr Boahen said.
He also asked the board to collaborate with the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) to build the capacity of SMEs to increase their access to international markets and create more employment for the Ghanaian youth.
“Ghana Exim Bank is located in the same premises as the AfCFTA Secretariat, and with such proximity, we expect a constructive collaboration between the two institutions towards creating funding programmes that will benefit SMEs to lead the export of high-quality Ghanaian products and services to other African countries,” he told the board.
Create bonds with DBG to drive import substitution
Aside from the need to drive export expansion, the board was also urged to build a strategic alliance with the upcoming Development Bank Ghana (DBG) to roll out financing initiatives to propel import substitution.
On this issue, the minister noted that the DBG would open a new opportunity for Ghana Exim Bank to develop and implement projects that would drive Ghana’s import substitution and export promotion.
This would ensure the president’s vision of a ‘Ghana Beyond Aid’.
“Your appointments to the GhanaExim Board at this time is part of a well-thought-out plan to resource this institution with a dedicated and committed board, whose actions would be reflective of the president’s vision and passion for the industrial transformation of this country and the realisation of sustained economic growth, job creation, inclusive prosperity for all, and a Ghana Beyond Aid,” Mr Boahen stated.
He referred to recent data published by the Bank of Ghana (BoG), which suggested that new credit advances grew by 30.4% on a year-on-year (y-o-y) basis to GH₵15.8 billion by the end of June 2020.
He then said, “it is our hope that with the new board in place and with support from the Development Bank, we will continue to see growth in private sector advances as we seek to revamp our economy.”
The minister has since urged the board to do their best in pursuing GhanaExim Bank’s mandate and justify the confidence the president has reposed in them.