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Business News of Wednesday, 7 March 2018


Closing borders has never helped economic growth – Africa Liberal Network Veep

Vice President of the Africa Liberal Network, Z play videoVice President of the Africa Liberal Network, Z

Vice President of the Africa Liberal Network, Zéphirin Diabré has stressed the need for African countries, particularly Ghana to open up their borders for the free movement of goods and people for economic growth and development.

His comments come on the back of suggestions by some security analysts that the recent spate of crime in Ghana stems from the free movement of foreign nationals in and out of the country.

Though they maintain that robberies have been happening over the years, they argue that the approach of robbers in recent times is foreign to Ghana hence the need for the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) to be proactive about their checks on persons who move in from neighboring countries for whichever purpose.

Speaking at a press conference held by the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) and the Africa Liberal Network Sunday March 4, Mr. Diabré indicated that closed borders should not be an option for consideration as far as economic growth and advancement are concerned. The free flow of goods and services he says are a vital part of the country’s development and cannot be achieved without human beings who are the transporters.

“Free movement of people, trade, and goods is good for economic growth, on the contrary, closing your borders has never been good for economic growth. This is the basic principle and this principle is governing the approach that you see in regional bodies and regional integration including in our part of the world here.

You can’t have free movement of goods without the people coming in because goods don’t move. This has governed also the decision taken by ECOWAS for instance that when you move from Ouagadougou to Accra, you don’t need a visa but moving is one thing, establishing yourself is another thing and this is where countries have the sovereignty to allow citizens from other countries to stay or not to stay based on the documentation that you provide and what is to be done.

If there are some bad guys who have established themselves here, there may be two ways they may have entered, either they may have been granted the permit of residence, or they came in illegally but if they came in illegally, it has nothing to do with the decision of free flow, because illegal people don’t work by the rules of law”.

He admonished therefore that other sustainable measures be developed as far as dealing with possible miscreants who may be migrating into the country to fuel criminal activities rather than opting for closed borders which will have huge effects on the country’s economic development.