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Business News of Friday, 25 June 2021


Rwanda, Ghana push for joint trade opportunities under AfCFTA

The AfCFTA Secretariat is located in Ghana-West Africa The AfCFTA Secretariat is located in Ghana-West Africa

A 34 member Rwanda trade and investment delegation comprising officials and stakeholders in the private sector have explored Ghana for bilateral opportunities in business, tourism and other mutually beneficial economic prospects.

The weeklong visit to Ghana, was in response to an earlier visit to Rwanda in March this year, by a trade delegation from Ghana, comprising key institutions to promote regional tourism and trade in anticipation of collaborations under the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).

Presently, bilateral trade data available at the Ghana Investment Promotion Authority (GEPA), shows that trade between Ghana and Rwanda is very low, at less than US$1 million.

However, there is a growing confidence among policymakers and businesses that, measures put in place to expand trade volumes between the two countries, would yield significant results in the coming years.

This is particularly so as the low volume and value of trade between the two countries present an opportunity for businesses to do more amidst recent bilateral trade interests.

In this vein, the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA) and the Rwanda Development Board are leading the charge through conversations to leverage resources by both countries for mutually beneficial trade opportunities. Key Ghanaian institutions, such as the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre and the Ghana Tourism Authority are also involved in the ongoing discussions.

Rwandan Ambassador to Ghana, Dr. Aisa Kirabo Kacyira, told the B&FT that the conversations also offered the delegation opportunities to explore prospects in key sectors within Ghana’s economy including education, mining and financial technology.

Speaking at a wrap-up business breakfast session in Accra on behalf of the delegation, Ambassador Kacyira, said the visit has offered both countries the opportunity to provide solutions to the challenges limiting intra-African trade particularly between the two.

“We are also using this opportunity to call on Ghanaian cocoa processing plants to invest in Rwanda and produce indigenous African chocolates instead of the imported ones we know in Rwanda. We are also ready to import our coffees and other agricultural products in order to set up businesses here” she said.

CEO of GEPA, Dr. Afua Asabea Asare, assured the delegation that the existing relationship between Ghana and Rwanda has been rekindled due to the passion exhibited by presidents of the two countries, President Akufo-Addo and Paul Kagame to tap into opportunities under the AfCFTA. “At GEPA, we are committed to boosting Ghana’s trade volumes with countries on the continent under the AfCFTA and Rwanda is a key partner in our plans,” she said.