Trade and Industry Minister, John Alan Kyerematen, says Ghana is ready to be used as entry point for Emirati businesses interested in investing in the country.

United Arab Emirates has emerged as one of Ghana’s major trading partners with value of trade averaging about $1.7 billion between 2011 and 2019.

Mr. Kyerematen said trade continues to remain stronger even with the disruptions from the COVID-19 pandemic where total trade stood at over $2 billion with Ghana consistently recording balance of trade surplus over the past years.

Addressing participants at a Ghana Business Forum in the ongoing Dubai Expo, Mr. Kyeremanten also said Ghana is seeking to advance cooperation and support with the UAE in strategic investments needed to harness the vast resources for industrial transformation as well as boost trade and investment.

“This platform will not only enhance partnership between Ghana and UAE, but will enable us to share experiences, as well as exchange information on priority sectors, special initiatives, and opportunities readily available for investments by our respective private sector operators”, he stressed.

Ghana is participating in the Dubai Expo with the aim of showcasing the vast investment potentials of the country. Just like the rest of the world, the country is reeling under the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

Alan Kyeremanten is however optimistic the disruption of the global supply chains caused by the pandemic has reinforced the necessity for closer collaboration, to enable the enhancement of mutual self-sufficiency, strengthen local economies, and reduce dependence on production of critical goods by companies operating from outside Ghana.

“It is against this background that Ghana has since 2017 focused attention on laying a strong foundation for economic transformation by restoring macroeconomic stability, stimulating the private sector through business regulatory reforms, and restructuring the financial sector to ensure easy access to finance”, he added.

He is counting on the ambitious and transformative flagship programmes such as the One District One Factory (1D1F) Initiative, and Planting for Food and Jobs programme to reposition the country to become the manufacturing hub for Africa.

“We are empowering our private sector to focus on selected value chains including Industrial Starch, Textiles & Garments, Pharmaceuticals, Cashew, Horticultural Products, Fish & Fishery Products, Cocoa, Automobiles and Vehicles, Industrial Salt, Integrated Aluminum and Bauxite, among others. These are products Ghana and UAE are currently engaged in trading’ he stressed.”