The Turkish government has through the Turk Export and Import Bank (Exim Bank) extended a $300 million facility to Ghana for infrastructural development. Welcoming the facility, President John Dramani Mahama said the money would be used for the expansion of the Tema Port, the construction of a new International Airport and the building of bridges and roads.
He was speaking at a breakfast roundtable organised in his honour, by the Turkish-Ghanaian Business Council and the Turkey Foreign Economic Relations Board.
President Mahama said the government would submit a priority list to the Turkish government for the money to be increased, since it was not enough to cover intended projects.
He expressed the hope that the extension of the facility to Ghana would bring about more development cooperation between Ghana and Turkey.
The President said trade between Ghana and Turkey was above $500 million and expressed the hope that it would reach the set target of $1 billion in four years.
He expressed satisfaction at the negotiations with the Turkish authorities, noting, for instance, that a decision had been taken to set up organised industrial zones in Ghana to provide investors with serviced land, offices and residences for the effective conduct of businesses.
He said Ghana had a free zone enclave where firms were exempted from taxes and duties, given tax holidays and other incentives that boost investment.
He gave the indication that Ghana was trying to cut down the duration for securing permits for land transactions.
President Mahama said there were numerous investment opportunities in Ghana’s oil and gas sector, with the country producing about 110,000 barrels of oil a day.
He noted that the production capacity was expected to rise to half a million barrels per day in five years as a result of the discovery of new reserves.
The President said Africa was going through a renaissance, with 20 elections having been held in 20 nations.
That feat, he said, demonstrated that democracy, constitutional governance and respect for human rights were being entrenched in Ghana and other African countries.
President Mahama mentioned plans by the government to establish an integrated bauxite and aluminium industry in Ghana, efforts to reduce the rice import bill through the processing of rice and gold industry as some of the possible areas of investment.
The President of the Ghana Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mr Seth Adjei Baah, said the chamber had signed several memoranda with its Turkish counterparts geared towards the promotion and diversification of trade, economic co-operation and exchange of information.
Source: Daily Graphic