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Business News of Friday, 8 May 2020


Business stories that made headlines this week

Following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic In Ghana, it’s been a rather hectic week into the new month of businesses having to adjust to the new normal.

With some firms and businesses having being forced to fold and lay off staff, others have introduced innovative measures due to social distancing directives with many opting for a Work from Home measure, virtual conferencing and meetings across various sectors.

Despite the new normal, some high-profile stories made waves in the news headlines in business from May 4, 2020 to May 8, 2020.

Below are some of the stories that trended in Business:

Insurance penetration may not increase due to coronavirus pandemic – NIC

Insurance penetration in Ghana may not witness an increase as earlier projected should the Coronavirus outbreak persist, the National Insurance Commission (NIC) has said.

According to a Deputy Director at the NIC, Ghana’s insurance sector which currently has a 2 percent penetration rate coupled with the coronavirus could adversely affect life insurance policies sold to the public by insurance firms.

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Alan, Kwaku Kwarteng storm Tema port due to cargo clearance delays

Following delays in cargo clearance at the Port of Tema as a result of the new Integrated Customs Management System and the shutting down of the GCNet and West Blue’s systems at ports, the leadership of the Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Trade took to the Tema port to assess the severity of the issue and come up with solutions that would mitigate the current challenges.

The delegation comprised, the Minister of Trade and Industry, Alan Kwadwo Kyeremanteng, a Deputy Minister of Finance, Kwaku Kwarteng, the Commissioner General of GRA, Ammishaddai Owusu-Amoah, the Commissioner of Customs, Rtd Colonel Kwadwo Damoah, officials from the office of the Senior Minister and some officials of Ghana Link Services.

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Coronavirus: $1bn IMF loan isn't 'interest-free' - Jinapor sets the records straight

Member of Parliament for Yapei/Kasawgu constituency, John Abdulai Jinapor says Ghanaians should be worried over government's subsidization of electricity bills because there will be serious implications in the offing.

Contributing to a panel discussion on Peace FM's programme 'Kokrokoo', John Jinapor wondered why the Akufo-Addo government would revert to the IMF for assistance when they promised Ghanaians not to borrow money like previous administrations.

He accused the government of massaging the truth for saying the IMF loan is interest-free, claiming Ghanaians will bear future consequences which will boomerang on the economy.

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Locked up funds: GH¢5.06bn has been paid to depositors - Oppong Nkrumah

Legitimate claims made to depositors of Savings & Loans and Micro Credit institutions whose funds were locked up due to the financial sector clean-up is at GH¢5.06 billion, the Information Minister has said.

According to him, GH¢2.11 billion in cash has so far been paid to depositors with about GH¢2.95 billion in zero-rated coupon bonds known as debt instruments has also been paid.

Speaking at the Minister’s press briefing in Accra on May 7, Oppong Nkrumah said depositors are expected to receive payments after validation of claims by the end of May, 2020.

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Gov't begins 3-day cabinet meeting to assess data on coronavirus impact

Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah on Thursday May 7 disclosed President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and his cabinet will hold a 3-day meeting to assess the economic impact of COVID-19 across the governance sectors in Ghana.

According to him, the conclave will be centred on examining the data gathered on the pandemic to mitigate measures on curbing the impact.

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GH¢600 million stimulus loan application portal to be launched soon - NBSSI

As part of intervention measures put in place by the government of Ghana to mitigate the scourge of the on Small and Medium scale businesses across the country, a portal for accessing GH¢600 million soft loan facilities would be launched for application process to begin, Executive Director of NBSSI disclosed on May 7, 2020.

This is in line with President Akufo-Addo’s promise to support SMEs who have been hardly hit by the coronavirus outbreak.

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Government orders Springfield, ENI to start unitization talks

Springfield E&P (SEP) and ENI Ghana Exploration Limited ( ENI) have been directed by government to commence immediate talks on unitization of the Afina and Sankofa fields offshore Ghana (operated by SEP and ENI respectively).

Based on technical evidence that the reservoir straddles both blocks, government directed in a letter dated 9th April, to commence unitization talks immediately and complete it in 120 days and provide the ministry with the finalised Agreement.

The Minister of Energy, Mr. John Peter Amewu, explained this will enable him to review and approve the unitization within 120 days from the date of the letter as required by law.

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EU blacklists Ghana over money-laundering

The European Union has blacklisted four African countries over money-laundering concerns as it says their financial transactions require further scrutiny.

Botswana, Ghana, Mauritius and Zimbabwe were part of 12 countries placed on the EU’s blacklist.

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