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Business News of Saturday, 11 February 2017


Ghana must reduce its dependency on China – Analyst

Ghana may have to adopt strategies that will reduce its dependency on China and benefit positively from its relationship with the Asian country.

This is the advice from International Relations Analyst, Professor Oliver Stuenkel.

Some have argued that Ghana’s relationship with the BRICS group comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa has rather led to exploitation by members such as China.

The development is feared to worsen at a time that China is leading the US in volumes of trade with Africa and Ghana.

“I think it is necessary to realize that despite the symmetry of power, Africa is still important to China just like China is to Africa and then what I think must be recognised in the concept of negotiating a strategy vis a vis China,” Professor Oliver Stuenkel remarked.

Though China has been one of the top trade partners with Ghana, the adverse impacts of the Asian country’s presence in the illegal mining business as well as retail trade in Ghana have in some aspects thwarted the economic relationship.

For instance, trade volume between Ghana and China reached 3.8 billion dollars from the 2.4 billion dollars recorded as at May 2016.

But the unfortunate incidences include some arrests made involving Chinese illegal miners in the galamsey business.

Two Chinese were in October 2016 arrested for excavating the land in the night for gold, destroying the cocoa seedlings.

The Ghana Union Traders Association (GUTA) has also complained bitterly about the takeover if their retail business by Chinese manufacturers.

But Professor Stuenkel who was speaking in an interview at the sidelines of a round table discussion on the theme, “Africa through the eyes of BRICS”, explained to Citi Business News a revised business model is necessary to strengthen the economic relationship between the two countries.

He also predicted of a six percent growth in Chinese investments to Ghana for this year.

“The growth has been characterized by a decrease in Brazilian investments but a significant increase in Indian and Chinese investments. For India’s investments, the goal is to overcome ten billion dollars in the case of Ghana; in the case of China, I think the country is expecting a six percent growth of investments into Ghana in 2017,” he said.