Northern-Southern highway to cost US$1bn – SADA Boss

The CEO of the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority, Dr. Charles Abugre, has stated that the Northern-Southern Highway to be implemented by the Akufo-Addo-led administration will cost the country US$1billion.

He made this statement during the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) and Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) to facilitate investment promotion in Northern Ghana.

Dr. Abugre stated that as part of Northern Development, a mall will also be built to increase the value of lands surrounding it. He said: “We are much further down the line in getting a mall for Tamale. This is part of a broader make-use real estate investment. When that mall takes off, the value of the land surrounding it goes up”.

He noted that currently some investors are sorting out the lands in Buipe to start working on, while other investors are clearing stumps in the Volta River for the aqua-culture project.

The Memorandum of Understanding lays out plans for SADA to develop a one-stop information platform that will provide expanded in-depth local support and up-to-date information to investors keen to explore investment possibilities on offer in the area.

Its arable land suitable for agriculture and agro-processing is high on the list for promotion and investment, and there are opportunities in providing supporting infrastructure and services.

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GIPC will in turn market investment projects developed by SADA to local and international business communities. Both parties will also to plan and implement joint investment promotion roadshows and forums both locally and abroad.

The organisations are also to undertake joint research and feasibility studies on making the area more attractive and available to broaden the landscape for investors, as well as methods to reduce and remove constraints to investment through policy and incentives.

Speaking at the signing ceremony, CEO of GIPC Yofi Grant said: “This is the start of an important leap forward for SADA. The region is working to maximise its potential and making a concerted effort to reach out to local and international investors who have an interest in conducting business in the region. GIPC is ready to provide its assistance in pulling these potential financiers and businessmen into the area to bolster the region’s economy”.

Mr. Abugre noted that: “It is an exciting time for the SADA region, because Ghana and the southern region are rich, viable investment destinations that provide dynamic yet stable business opportunities for investors looking to enter the West African market.  We are looking forward to actively engaging businesses on how they can help drive growth in the region”.

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Also present was a representative of the Minister for Special Development Initiatives, Hawa Koomson. According to her, establishing the three development authorities under the Ministry of Special Development Initiatives is to enable government accelerate the development process and ensure inclusive growth that will lead to job-creation, equal opportunity, and prosperity for all.

She said in this regard the development authorities will be required to develop comprehensive development strategies that are consistent with national development plans to guide investors in identifying potential areas for investment in their respective zones.

She encouraged the two institutions to continue working closely together to enable the achievement of an accelerating socio-economic transformation. “The future envisaged for the next generation is one that must be sustainable, inclusive and innovative. High levels of investment will therefore help Ghana achieve this feat,” she added.

The Ghana Investment Promotion Centre is the government agency responsible for encouraging and promoting investment in Ghana.

The Savannah Accelerated Development Authority is an independent agency for coordinating a comprehensive development agenda for the northern savannah ecological zone in Ghana.

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