Create Partnership With Ghanaian Businesses For Your Mutual Benefits – K.T. Hammond Tells U.S. Business Leaders

The Minister of Trade and Industry, Hon. K.T. Hammond, has showcased government’s industrialization agenda to U.S business leaders, calling on them to partner with Ghanaian business people for their mutual benefits. He has cited the 1D1F initiative as one of the potential areas of partnership that U.S. businesses could consider, as the programme has very attractive incentive packages.

The Minister, who is on an official visit to Washington, D.C, made the call when he visited the offices of the Corporate Council on Africa (CCA) as well as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

In separate discussions with the two entities, the Minister said the purpose of the visits was to familiarize himself with the workings and priorities of the two bodies in order to explore opportunities for collaboration and support.

He added that government is also encouraging garment manufacturers set up in Ghana, citing Dignity DTRT as an example of a garment manufacturer which has established a state-of-the art garment factory and has a linkage with an American company that is importing its garments. He expressed concern about the expiry of the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and what the Chamber could do to help push for its renewal, as Ghanaian textile and garment dealers are very concerned about the impact the possible expiry of AGOA could have on their businesses.

The President & CEO of the Corporate Council for Africa, Ms. Florizelle (Florie) Liser, highlighted the longstanding relationship of her entity, including Ghana, noting that the President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has once being the guest of the Council.

She informed the Minister that the Council hosts the Annual U.S-Africa Business Summit, for which that of 2024 will take place in Dallas, Texas, and that the President of the Republic has been invited to attend. She said a key feature of this year’s event is a collaboration with the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) on a special 20th anniversary celebration on the margins of the summit in Dallas where they will be hosting former President George H.W. Bush, who established MCC, for which Ghana was one of the first countries to have a compact from MCC.

On the Minister’s request for more advocacy on the extension of AGOA, she siad the Council had already engaged with Members of the House Ways and Means Committee, (which is the trade committee at the U.S. House of Representatives), on the subject and advocated for its extension. She remarked that this is very crucial because about 3 years ago, Ghana doubled its exports of apparel under AGOA due to the establishment of the Tema textiles enclave, highlighting the importance of AGOA to Ghana.

At the meeting with U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Mr. Rick Wade, Senior Vice President of Strategic Alliances and Outreach at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce said the Chamber was working on an initiative dubbed “Advance with Africa”, a roadshow to reach out to the 2.6 million black-owned businesses in the U.S. to invest in Africa, particularly Ghana. He assured the Hon. Minister that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce was ready to work with him to strengthen business ties between U.S. and Ghana.

On his part, Dr. Guevera Yao, Vice President, U.S.-Africa Business Center of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce touched on the importance the Biden administration places on the diaspora as a group capable of transforming Africa, saying the administration has set up the President’s Council on African Diaspora Engagement (PAC-ADE) tasked with giving the President advice on how to engage the diaspora to do more in Africa.

The CCA is a 30-year old Business Association whose members are both U.S and African companies, including SMEs and multinationals, and primarily advocates for U.S trade, investments and business with Africa, including Ghana.

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Transforming governance in Ghana: A new regulatory service model for Africa

Ghana is keeping pace with the rapid global transition to digital technologies, including in the realm of e-government where the country is regarded as a leader in Africa. Ghana received high scores on the 2022 United Nations E-Participation Index, which assesses the extent to which governments use online platforms and technologies to involve citizens in decision-making processes and policy development.

The 2022 World Bank GovTech Maturity Index also finds Ghana outperforming regional peers. Digital service delivery is strengthening governance and providing efficiencies for the public and private sectors. Ghana’s Business Regulatory Reform unit (BRR), established in 2017 within the Ministry of Trade and Industry, provides a strong example. Under the Ghana Economic Transformation Project (GETP) and with technical assistance from the ACP-Business Friendly Program funded by the EU, the World Bank is supporting the BRR in boosting increased citizen engagement through e-portals. Technology tools are ensuring that the private sector is aware of regulations, allowing the BRR to better engage companies in the regulatory process and identify regulatory bottlenecks.

Three examples stand out:

Business Regulations E-Registry:

After its inception, the BRR quickly adopted ICT tools to serve its constituents. One of the most significant developments was the launch of an e-registry in 2020, which allows users to access and download regulations relevant to the business environment. The e-registry includes user-friendly features like keyword searchability and filters to locate relevant regulations. The e-registry not only streamlines the process for companies to establish and operate legally but also strengthens their adherence to legal regulations.

Consultation Platform on Draft Laws and Regulatory Proposals:

BRR’s commitment to promoting regulatory transparency through technology-enabled services extends to participatory governance. The Public Consultation Portal enables civil society to access draft laws while BRR officials review feedback, including comments and poll results. For example, the MSME (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises) Classification Regulation (2021) garnered over 1,000 views and received valuable suggestions. A notable one was to use employment numbers to categorize firms (e.g., micro, small, medium, and large). This criteria was incorporated in the final regulation adopted by Parliament.

An online ‘suggestion box’:

The BRR seeks to engage citizens and firms through the ‘Have Your Say’ platform that allows companies to voice complaints on regulatory bottlenecks and suggest improvements. Users can submit their recommendations for review by BRR personnel. This feature, inspired by Singapore’s Pro-Enterprise Panel suggestion window, aims to identify and address procedural bottlenecks and implementation gaps on regulatory reform implementation. The feedback platform, still in the initial stages of implementation, promises to provide an efficient means of reaching officials to improve business conditions.

Looking ahead: Is Ghana a new regulatory service model for Africa?

The BRR is committed to sharing knowledge with peers across the continent. In March 2023, with support provided under the ACP Business Friendly Program funding by the European Union, BRR representatives introduced their digital solutions and lessons learned to a delegation from Madagascar. Following this exchange, the country is now looking to implement similar tools to better engage its private sector in the regulatory reform process.

While e-service tools are starting to make their mark in Ghana, the BRR continuously seeks to enhance its digital services. Improvements include building awareness about these online solutions and strengthening constituents’ trust in these tools.

As countries on the continent strive for sustainable growth, enhancing service delivery efficiency and involving the private sector and citizens in governance are crucial steps. Developing targeted technology solutions will help African nations leverage governance improvements and operational efficiencies, and thereby better support their populations and foster development.

The next time you think of getting access to business-related regulations in Ghana, kindly visit for help.

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Policy-space for Industrialization – a key determinant for Africa’s development: K.T. Hammond

The Minister for Trade and Industry, K.T. Hammond, has called for policy space to facilitate Africa’s industrialization agenda. In a meeting with Ms. Rebecca Grynspan, Secretary-General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in Geneva as part of a working visit, K.T. Hammond emphasized the importance of securing requisite flexibilities in trade rules with a view to ensuring that Africa benefits fully from the multilateral trading system.

K.T. Hammond articulated the view that for Africa to benefit fully from the multilateral trading system, the Continent has to be in a position to attract a significant amount of trade-related investment that would enable it to take advantage of global value chains. Accordingly, he underscored the importance of obtaining flexibilities in multilateral trade rules that could spur Africa’s industrialization agenda and facilitate development on the Continent. The Minister was of the view that the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) provides the continent with a good starting point by removing trade-related bottlenecks and ensuring that export volumes and values are increased on the continent.

With reference to the recent Ministerial Conference of the WTO held in Abu Dhabi in February 2024, K.T. Hammond underscored the importance of working together to build trust among members and achieve consensus on key issues such as agriculture which could facilitate value-addition and ramp up exports in Africa.

In her remarks, Ms. Grysnpan, Secretary-General of UNCTAD also shared the view that the global-south had to be supported to fully integrate into the multilateral trading system through capacity building initiatives such as those provided by UNCTAD. She emphasized the need to work together to achieve multilateral agreements that supports the development of all, of course, with special and differential treatment being accorded the most vulnerable.

She further called for a complementarity of measures such as equitable financial regulations and investment regimes to support global trade rules to deliver development for all.

In his closing remarks, K.T. Hammond emphasized the fact that the President of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo had clearly articulated a transition from the “Guggisberg- raw material based” economy to one of value addition and had gone further to ensure the advancement of Ghana’s industrialization agenda with the 1D1F programme and the establishment of strategic anchor industries among many others.




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Cement Manufacturers Urged to Publish Recommended Retail Prices

The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MoTI) and the Chamber of Cement Manufacturers, Ghana (COCMAG) have agreed to periodically hold consultative meetings with industry players on developments in cement manufacturing, bagging and distribution, especially prior to the announcement of ex-factory price changes by the individual companies.

The Minister called the meeting to express concern about the rising cost of cement at the retail end and its adverse economic impact on the economy.  The Minister wondered how a bag of cement could be selling at GHS95.00 in some parts of the country, even around the Accra/Tema Municipalities.

The Minister entreated the industry to take cognizance of the widespread effects of price escalation and the need to closely monitor and exercise control over the recommended ex-factory price margins of distributors and retailers of their respective grades of products across the country.

Specific measures agreed on for urgent implementation include the following:

  • Individual companies to publish the recommended distribution and retail prices of the various grades of products sold in each of their respective distribution zones.
  • Vigorously enforce quality standards and weights of cement products on the market to clamp down on the production and distribution of substandard cement products.
  • Collaborate on exploring the possibility of introducing a uniform cement pricing formula that ensures uniformity and consistency in retail pricing across the country, taking into account key cost variables.

The Ministry would like to assure the consuming public that these and any other measures necessary will be implemented in collaboration with the Chamber of Cement Manufacturers, Ghana, to ensure price adjustments are justifiable and within reasonable limits.

Head, Communication and Public Advocacy
Ministry of Trade and Industry

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Reduce your prices to help make life bearable for Ghanaians – K.T. Hammond

The Minister for Trade and Industry, Hon Kobina Tahir Hammond (MP), has made a passionate appeal to the Ghanaian trading, commercial and industrial fraternity to reduce their prices and help make life a little bearable for the consumer. He says doing so will be part of their corporate social responsibility to their consumers and the country as a whole.

The Minister, who made the appeal during the 47th Annual General Meeting of the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Accra, also noted that Government will equally reciprocate the gesture by establishing the appropriate economic framework and conducive ambience for their businesses and the nation to thrive. Hon K.T. Hammond recalled the recurrent theme in public discourse which centres on the excessive profit that some in the business community make. Whilst acknowledging the fact that he was neither unappreciative of the various cost and input factors of production, nor the effect of the dollarisation of the economy with its cascading effect on the prices of products,  as well as the plaintive cries about the taxes and levies paid to Government, the Minister wondered whether these are the all reasons why the cost of living in Ghana is so unacceptably high.

The Minister however, had no issues with any efforts to make decent profits, and called on the Chamber and its members not to harbour the erroneous belief that there is a radical ignorance in the people about what some term as “the abnormal or super-normal” profits some of them make. He recounted a recent story about some High Street shops and supermarkets in some jurisdictions which took a collective decision not to pass on to the already overstretched consumers extra cost which they would normally have had to pay. He said the enterprises decided to absorb the  costs to help ease the burden of the consumer as their collective corporate social responsibility to the public.

Turning to the theme of the AGM, “Building Business Confidence in the Midst of Economic Challenges”, he noted that much of the economic soundness of yesteryears has been disrupted by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and the invasion of Ukraine, which have presented the world with the most significant set of challenges since World War II. He observed that on the back the two crises, coupled with other longer-term trends, the world faces pervasive challenges, which will likely slow growth and create significant difficulties for leaders around the globe for some time to come.

According to the Minister, all is not that gloomy, as the Bank of Ghana reports that economic growth was quite strong in the First Half of 2023, with data released by  the Ghana Statistical Service further indicating that real GDP growth was 3.2 percent in the 2nd Quarter of 2023, marginally down from 3.3 percent in the 1st Quarter and 3.5 percent in the same period last year. He called for innovative thinking, and investments in research and development, particularly in industries that have demonstrated growth potential. He also noted that government is encouraging innovation by creating programs that incentivise entrepreneurship and small business development.

The Minister revealed that Government, upon realising that complicated regulatory environments can encourage disinvestment, has tried to demystify the investment regime by simplifying the legislative framework surrounding it. He said Ghana’s Business Regulatory Reform Strategy sought to institutionalise policy reform measures to encourage the private sector to invest in industrial ventures, create more jobs, and promote interventions in support of innovation and entrepreneurship. According to Hon K.T.Hammond, Government is making progress in implementing a comprehensive and integrated programme for industrial transformation with initiatives such as the ‘1 District 1 Factory’ policy – to transform the structure of Ghana’s economy from dependency on the import and export of raw materials to one focused on manufacturing, value addition and export of processed goods. He revealed that at the last count, a Hundred and Sixty-nine (169) factories were operational, with the number expected to increase next year.

Among others, the Minister also noted that over a relatively short span of 3 years of a deliberate policy intervention to create a new automotive sector, Ghana is now recognized as an emerging hub for vehicle assembly, with the country currently hosting 6 vehicle assembly plants producing 11 vehicle brands including Volks Wagen, Toyota, Suzuki, Nissan, KIA and Hyundai.

He assured the gathering that Government would continue to implement transformative initiatives in key strategic sectors which would anchor the country’s vision of industrialisation, and called on them to continue to keep faith in the Government, support Government initiatives with their constructive inputs and know-how and enrich the reform programmes with their experience to help build the most business-friendly economy in Africa.

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Ghana and Danish Company to Explore Opportunities of Assembling Electric Vehicles in Ghana

The Ministry of Trade and Industry has signed a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding with a Danish private limited company, Byteblocs International, to promote the investment and development of an Aluminum Recycling and Components Manufacturing Plant (which will include Lithium batteries), LED Lighting and Electric mobility vehicles manufacture in Ghana.

The signing ceremony took place when Ghana’s Ambassador to Denmark, H.E. Sylvia Annoh, led a Danish business delegation to pay a courtesy call on the Minister of Trade and Industry, Hon. Kobina Tahir Hammond. Hon. K.T. Hammond initialed for the Ministry, whilst Jakob Munkgaard Andersen signed on behalf of Byteblocs.

The Parties agreed that the implementation of the Project contemplated by the agreement would be subject to the receipt of all applicable governmental, regulatory, and other approvals that may be required as per the laws and regulations of the respective countries of each Party and each Party’s internal regulations including but not limited to Standards and Certification.

As part of its responsibilities under the MoU, the Byteblocs will take into consideration sustainable and environmentally friendly production systems, skills development, and the transfer of technology to Ghanaians, including partnerships with local suppliers and distributors and training for employees and agents. The project will also include the setting up aftersales stations or centres across the country.

On its part, the Ministry of Trade and Industry and its agencies and relevant authorities, is to assist the Project in identifying suitable land for acquisition, as well as offer relevant incentives and regulatory support to the Project in line with the relevant policies and laws of Ghana. The Ministry also undertook to assist the company to acquire, residence and working permits in Ghana, including visas for planning and commencement activities.

The MoU will remain in effect for a period of five (5) years, even though either Party may terminate it at any time by giving the other Party thirty (30) days’ written notice.

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Ghana is fully committed to improving the lives of women in Cross-Border trade – Trade Minister

The Deputy Minister for Trade and Industry, Hon. Oheneba Nana Ama Dokua Asiamah-Adjei has reiterated the government’s commitment and preparedness to work on policies that will improve the lives of women Small Scale Cross Border Traders in the country. This was said in a speech read on her behalf at a three-day sensitization workshop organized by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Commission with other relevant industry players at Tema in the Greater Accra Region.

The objective of the workshop was to facilitate cross-border trade and improve the operations of small-scale traders by enhancing their knowledge and understanding of trade and related Community text and initiatives. It will also serve as a feedback mechanism to receive information from the traders and other stakeholders.

According to her, cross-border trade has become an integral source of income for many women, which has contributed to the economic empowerment and improvement  of the living conditions of families, hence the need to support them. She stressed that the Government of Ghana, through the Ministry of Trade and Industry remains committed to support the ECOWAS Commission to facilitate trade in the sub-region to the benefit of ECOWAS member states.

Ghana is fully committed to improving outcomes for women in trade. What we have done is to mainstream gender in Trade Policy formulation and implementation. Working in collaboration with the World Bank Group, the Ministry of Trade and Industry launched the Gender Sub-Committee of the NTFC on November 15, 2021” she said. “One of the key responsibilities of the sub-committee was to sensitize Women Small Scale Cross Border Trader on trade protocols in the sub-region as well as emerging multilateral and bilateral trade agreements” she added.

The Minister emphasized that women serve as the grassroots ambassadors for cross-border cooperation and can help strengthen economic ties between neighboring countries. She lauded the ECOWAS Commission and other stakeholders for organizing the workshop which she believed would go a long way to make Cross-Border trading less stressful and achieved its desired goal for the economy.

In a message read on behalf of the Deputy Minister for Gender, Children and Social protection, Hon. Francisca Oteng Mensah said, empowering women is the most necessary action to take in improving sustainable national development. “Once women are equipped in knowledge on business operations, it helps them to function effectively. A self- employed woman can contribute not only to family finances but the Nation’s GDP as a whole. Women often make up a substantial portion of small-scale cross-border traders therefore such sensitization efforts can promote gender equality by providing them with knowledge and right resources to engage in trade activities confidently” she said.

The ECOWAS representative to Ghana, Ambassador Baba Gana WAKIL, launching the event, highlighted the challenges women traders face in their business which includes complex customs clearance procedures, documentation requirements, harassment, as well as irregular fee collection. These challenges, he said, had significantly hindered the development of their businesses with an overall impact to intra-regional trade and income per capita. It is the expectation of ECOWAS Commission that the three-day training,  will promote the operation of small-scale women traders in a hassle-free and secure environment with a notable reduction in harassment against women.


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Trade and Industry Minister Commissions Ghana-EU Housing units for Farmers under (BAM) Project

The Ministry of Trade and Industry has commissioned a 224 on-farm housing units on the plantation of Golden Exotic Limited (GEL) at Kasunya/Asutsuare in the Shai Osoduku District of the Greater Accra Region.

In a speech read on behalf of the sector minister, Hon Nana Ama Dokuaa Asiamah-Adjei, Deputy Minister responsible for International Trade, said the newly constructed housing units are equipped with modern facilities aimed at ensuring a comfortable living for farmers and their families under the Banana Accompanying Measures (BAM). In addition, the houses have been designed with a focus on their functionality and sustainability which feature energy-efficient electricity systems, water treatment plant and a community Centre.

Hon. Oheneba Nana Ama Dokua Asiamah-Adjei noted  that the completion of the 224 housing units marks a long-awaited, yet significant milestone in the journey towards creating a thriving farming community in Ghana. “The European Union and the Government of Ghana look forward to continuing their fruitful partnership to further empower farmers, contribute to sustainable rural development, and improve the overall quality of life in the agricultural sector” she said.

She emphasizes that access to decent and affordable housing plays a crucial role in creating a conducive environment for farmers to thrive and contribute effectively to the agricultural sector. By providing farmers with these housing units, the BAM project is aimed to address the pressing issue of rural poverty and homelessness within the farming community. The project is part of the broader Banana Accompanying Measures Program, which prioritized the development of the agricultural sector while enhancing social welfare within the farming community.

She expressed government’s appreciation for the European Union’s support for the project. “We are proud to have collaborated with the European Union in realizing this important project. The housing units will unlock potential and enhance the agricultural productivity of the farmers. This is an embodiment of the shared vision for rural development and poverty reduction, which lies at the core of our collaboration” She added. It was revealed that the European Union concluded a deal with Latin America and the USA in 2009 to settle 15 years of their Banana-trade disputes, the agreed cuts in EU Tariffs for banana’s imported from Latin American countries increased competition for African and Caribbean banana exporters. The BAM was therefore introduced to help African and Caribbean banana exporting countries remain competitive in the EU market.

In 2013, the EU and the Government of Ghana (represented by the Ministry of Finance) signed a Financing Agreement (FA) for the BAM package at a total cost of €7.2 million Euros to support the Ghana’s Banana Industry. European Union Ambassador to Ghana, H.E. Irchad Razaaly, highlighted the significance of the partnership in empowering local communities: “These housing units are a testament to our commitment to uplifting farmers and strengthening the agricultural sector. They will not only provide a safe and comfortable space for the farmers but also enable them to lead better lives.” He said.

He noted that the BAM supports the competitiveness of the Ghanaian Banana export sector, while ensuring its environmental and socio-economic sustainability in the long run.”

Vice President of Compagnie Fruitiere in Ghana (Parent company of Golden Exotics Limited) Mr. Olivier Chassang, in his address said “This is a major milestone in the social development of the company and a great example of international cooperation”


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