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Business News of Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Source: Daily Guide Network

EU Eyes Migration Pact With Ghana

The European Union (EU) says it wants to establish a migration and stability programme in collaboration with Ghana to develop the country and stimulate higher growth in Europe.

Claude Maerten, Head of Delegation of the European Union to Ghana, disclosed this in an interview with CITY & BUSINESS GUIDE Tuesday in Accra.

“In Europe, we have situations in some economic sectors where we do not have enough manpower. We foresee that with the aging population in Europe, there would be the need to have manpower coming from other countries of the world. And so, we have considered some of this for Ghana.

“It is very important that trained people living in Europe or the US, will have the opportunity to come back to Ghana if they want to work in Ghana or if they want to be part of the working force to make Ghana a middle-income country and society, be able to do that to save the lower end of the middle income. And I know that there are many Ghanaians there who might want to come. Migration is a tool for Europe and Ghana to share the benefits of mobility.”

Commenting on Ghanaians who were not skilled but live in the Diaspora illegally, he noted: “People who are faced with illegal migration and travel to different parts of the world should not be treated with contempt. Maltreating them is against international human rights.”

He noted: “On the relation between Europe and Africa, it is clearly one of the priorities of the EU to come up with a strong foreign policy. We have with Ghana and the rest of West Africa, a long standing relationship which is being governed by the Cotonou convention. We have for instance with Ghana a long-standing relationship that is multi-faceted.

“We also have the EPA since 2007, more dialogue on migration and a new one which is being proposed by Europe which is called agenda on mobility and migration. We should soon start a working group to see what the working interests for Ghana and Europe are.”

He said Ghana has been selected to continue enjoying external assistance from the EU between 2014 and 2020.

He added that even though Ghana was working towards becoming a middle-income country, there would still be some sectors that need external assistance and therefore the reduction in development assistance will not register any significant difference.

He said that investors in EU could nonetheless come over to Ghana to invest since foreign direct investment (FDI) was a private sector decision “so we have nothing to say to that. It is better to invest in any country of their choice.”

The current situation in Europe will be the subject of a meeting among European leaders on 18th and 19th October, this year.

It will start with the economic union compact for growth and job creation.

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