Business News of Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Source: Daily Graphic

Canadian delegation explores business opportunities in Ghana

A 29-member Canadian business delegation is in Ghana to explore business opportunities in the areas of energy, housing and water.

The delegation is being led by the Canadian Minister for International Trade, Mr Ed Fast, who is making history as the first Canadian International Trade Minister to visit Ghana.

Mr Fast has since led the delegation, who are representatives of 29 Canadian companies, to call on President John Dramani Mahama at the Castle, Osu.

He told President Mahama the decision of Canada to invest in Ghana was because of the country's thriving economy and stable democracy.

"Ghana's economy is doing well. Ghana is one of the most stable democracies in Africa," he said.

Besides, the International Trade Minister said Ghana and Canada shared the same values of democracy, rule of law and respect for human rights.

He, therefore, said Canada was interested in investing in various sectors of the Ghanaian economy, including energy, housing, education, water and sewage, Information and Communications Technology (ICT).

Mr Fast said energy was one of the critical areas that Canada had expertise in and would be willing to invest in that area in Ghana.

Infrastructure development, he said, was another area that Canada had commitment to support Ghana develop.

Responding, President Mahama gave the assurance that the government would provide the congenial atmosphere for the Canadian companies to invest in the country

He said the government believed that the private sector should be the engine of growth and would, therefore, continue to support the growth of that sector.

The President said energy was one of the areas that the government wanted to focus on so much because the country's energy needs increased by 10 per cent annually.

He said the government intended to explore other sources of energy, including wind and solar, to double the nation's energy capacity within the next four years.

He welcomed the decision of the companies to build 60,000 houses, which he said, was in line with his election promise to build 20,000 houses.

On the economy, President Mahama said Ghana's economy was doing well, and indicated that the economy grew by 14 per cent in 2011 with an average growth of 10 per cent per annum.