GEPA promotes made-in-Ghana goods in Abidjan
The Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA) on Monday opened the second “Solo Exhibition” in Abidjan to showcase made in Ghana goods, as part of demonstrating Ghana’s belief in trade with neighbouring countries.
The exhibition on the theme: “Borderless trade, enhancing Ghana – Cote d’Ivoire economic cooperation through trade” will end on November 26.
Mr Edwin Nii Lante Vanderpuye, Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry speaking at the launch said the theme was carefully chosen to demonstrate Ghana’s desire to see the level of trade between both countries grow at an even faster and better pace.
He said the development of countries within the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), into middle-income countries within the shortest possible time would depend to a large extent on how serious they tackle the level of trade and other economic activities amongst themselves.
Mr Vanderpuye called for the creation of a common railway line throughout the sub-region to boost trade and economic growth.
“Increased intra-ECOWAS trade has the capacity to improve the livelihood of our people and to bring majority of them out of poverty than one would imagine.
“I find this theme of borderless trade very appropriate considering the historic trade, cultural and diplomatic relations that exist between the two countries,” the Deputy Minister stated.
“It is about time we take the bold step as two close allies in the sub-region to dismantle whatever remaining trade and economic bottlenecks and barriers that may exist between us.”
The Deputy Minister commended the able manner in which President Alassane Outtara steered the affairs of the regional body over the past few years.
He said the fact that the exhibition came so close on the heels of the just ended 7th ECOWAs Fair held in Accra, demonstrates Ghana’s preparedness to do all it takes to move the regional integration process forward through trade.
Mr Vanderpuye urged the Ivorian business community and the private sector to consider the exhibition as a good opportunity and platform offered by the GEPA to engage in fruitful business deals with their Ghanaian counter parts.
The Ivorian Minister of Commerce, Handicrafts and Promotion of Small Scale Enterprises, Mr Jean Louis Billon called for more trade and economic collaboration between both countries.
Mr Gideon Quarcoo, GEPA Chief Executive Officer said it was because of the success of last year’s “Solo Exhibition” which the Authority organised in Abidjan that they have decided to stage another one.
He said: “Our presence here is a demonstration of our commitment to forge ahead with our Ivorian partners in moving our trade relations to the next level. It is a demonstration of the vote of confidence that the Ghanaian private sector has in the economy of Cote d’Ivoire.”
Mr Bons A. Abambora, Acting Head of Ghana’s Mission said the success of the exhibition should not be measured by how much goods on the stand would be sold out, but by how many business deals that would be reached on the sideline of it between the Ghanaian and their Ivorian counterparts.
The launching ceremony which was chaired by Mr Aly Coulibaly, Ivorian Minister for Regional Integration, was also attended by members of the diplomatic community in Cote d’Ivoire, the business communities from both countries and the public.