Exports of goods and services from South Africa into Ghana have grown from about $138 million to $416 million in ten years.
Products such as vehicles, machinery, mechanical appliances; electrical equipment, base metals, aircraft, vessels & associated products have contributed to the increased exports to Ghana, SA government officials say.
This makes Ghana the second largest export market for South African goods in West Africa after Nigeria.
Welcoming Ghana’s President John Evans Atta Mills on a two-day state visit to South Africa, Mr. Jacob Zuma, President of South Africa, disclosed in his speech that his country’s trade exports into Ghana have grown tremendously.
Mr Zuma thanked Prof. Mills for creating an opportunity for South African business people to invest in Ghana.
“South African exports have grown from less than one billion rand (approximately $139 million) in 1998 to over 3 billion rand ($417 million) in 2008. We thank you, Mr President, for creating an opportunity for South African business people to invest in Ghana,” Mr. Zuma told President Mills in Cape Town today August 23, 2011.
“We welcome the progress thus far. In recent years, trade between South Africa and Ghana has grown significantly,” he added.
Mr. Zuma indicated that there are more than 80 South African multinational and small scale companies registered in Ghana and that investors are prevalent in sectors such as mining, retail, insurance, transport, tourism, banking, telecommunications, construction, services, franchising, manufacturing, fishing, advertising, aviation and energy.
Some of the South African companies which have invested in Ghana include MTN, Telkom, Standard Bank, Gold Fields, SABMiller, Woolworths, Engen, Hytec Engineering, Multichoice, Alliance Media, Steeldale, Stanbic Bank, Shoprite Checkers, Sherwood, Steers and South African Airways.
Meanwhile President Mills during the visit is expected to sign three bilateral memoranda of understanding with President Zuma, the Department of International Relations and Cooperation of South Africa said in a statement on its website.
“The two Presidents will discuss and concretise cooperation in the key bilateral priority areas such as cooperation in trade, tourism, communication technology, energy, mining, agriculture, and science and technology,” it said.
Together we have identified areas of further expansion. These include tourism, communication technologies, mining, agriculture and infrastructure development, Zuma said.
President Atta Mills will lay a wreath at the Gugulethu 7 Memorial near Cape Town. It is also expected that President Atta Mills will visit Robben Island.
The two Presidents will use the occasion to discuss enhanced cooperation in dealing with multilateral issues such as reform of global institutions of governance such as the UN Security Council and the Bretton Woods Institutions, officials noted.
By Ekow Quandzie