Regional News of Friday, 25 January 2013

Source: GNA

Australia High Commission commends Ghana

The Australian High Commission has commended Ghana for upholding the tenets of democracy, good governance, commitment to peace and security.

The Commission also praised Ghana for ensuring the importance of free trade and investment between the two countries.

Ms Susan Ulrich, acting Australia High Commissioner in Ghana, said Ghana had built an impressive reputation as it is committed to peace and security through its contributions to international peacekeeping missions and support for the regional solution to crisis such as those in Mali and Guinea-Bissau.

Ms Ulrich said these on Thursday at a ceremony organised by the High Commission to mark the National Day of Australia in Accra.

The ceremony was attended by members of the diplomatic corps, civil society organisations and a cross section of Ghanaians who were treated to choral music by the Tema Youth Choir.

Ms Ulrich also congratulated Ghana for demonstrating once more that it is an example for the African continent by conducting free, fair and transparent elections last year.

“As President Mahatma’s government begins its new term, Australia will remain a firm friend of Ghana through increasing cooperation in diplomacy, development and trade and investment” she said.

Ms Ulrich said Ghana received the most of Australia’s scholarship award for any African country in 2012 in 84 priority areas such as health, education, mining, governance and public policy.

She said the Australia awards programme covered over 1,000 scholarships across Africa every year which help to build the human resources capacity and people-to-people links with future leaders.

Ms Ulrich used the opportunity to introduce the newly appointed Australia High Commissioner to Ghana, Mrs Joanna Adamson.

Mr Leslie Kojo Christian, Chief Director at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, said in February 2012, the Australia High Commission opened the Visa Application Centre in Accra to facilitate its operations.

Mr Christian said the Commission had also established a Trade Commission Office in Accra to promote trade and investment between the two countries adding that the office was providing guidance to Ghanaian businessmen on how to do business in Australia.

He commended the Australia government for selecting Ghana as one of the beneficiary countries of the Australia Youth Ambassador for Development Programme which includes the deployment of skilled Australia youth to developing countries to assist deprived communities by sharing their professional skills and making meaningful contributions in fields such as agriculture and water and sanitation.