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MTN spends over GH¢2m on social responsibility, to invest $400m in infrastructure

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mtnMTN Ghana invested over GH¢2 million into corporate social responsibility (CSR) projects in 2008, Mr Brett Goschen, Chief Executive Officer of the company, told the GNA on Thursday.

The amount was spent mainly on health and education related projects.

He said for education, GH¢929,580 went into the MTN Foundation’s Education Flagship Project, dubbed MTN Learning Centres.

Under it 10 ICT centres were provided across the 10 regions of Ghana; GH¢108,607 for MTN’s scholarship scheme, GH¢97,214 for the Academy Educational Development (teaching and learning aid project) and GH¢18,000 to support National Best Teacher Awards.

On health, the company spent GH¢650,000 the Health Flagship Project, the refurbishing of the second floor of the Maternity Ward of the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital; and GH¢124,129 for the construction of an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at the Princess Marie Louis Children’s Hospital in Accra.

The company also spent some GH¢90,000 on the second edition of its 21 Days of Yello Care project last year.

Last year’s Yello Care project took MTN staff, including the top management, to institutions and communities across the country providing voluntary health, sanitation and beautification services.

Mr Goschen said CSR was a key focus area for MTN in all of its 21 operations in Africa and the Middle East, adding that the CSR agenda was entrusted to MTN Foundation, which was a separate legal entity with its own board of directors and patrons, to ensure autonomy and smooth operations.

He said the foundation aimed to demonstrate MTN Ghana’s commitment to and support for community empowerment driven by employee volunteerism.

The MTN Foundation manages a special fund into which one per cent of MTN’s annual post tax profits are paid under the company’s corporate social responsibility projects.

Mr Goschen said beside the investment into CSR, MTN Ghana also paid GH¢222.8 million in taxes to government in 2008, representing 5.2 per cent of total tax revenues for that year, which stood at GH¢4,299.5 million.

Additionally the telecom industry contributed an estimated 10 per cent of GDP and MTN alone contributed about 60 per cent of that.

For that same year the company’s total revenue stood at GH¢793 million, having grown by 67.2 per cent from GH¢533 million in 2007.

The company’s operating profit for that year also grew by GH¢293 million, which was 75 per cent higher than that GH¢220 million in 2007.

On expenditure for infrastructure, Mr Goschen said the company had projected to spend US$400 million on infrastructure this year alone, having spent a similar amount in the last two years it had been in country.

He said the company had also earmarked some US$1.6 million as training budget for local staff this year.

Mr. Goschen said when MTN took over from the operators of Scancom Limited, there were 44 Ghanaians in senior management positions and none in executive position, but now there were four Ghanaians in top executive positions and 87 Ghanaians in senior management positions.

He said MTN had created a minimum of 120,000 jobs outside of its core staff, adding that those jobs provided income that supported about 500,000 Ghanaians.

Source: GNA

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