The Secretary of Commerce of the United States of America, Wilbur Ross, was in the country last week for four days and addressed the maiden USA-Ghana Business Forum at the new Marriot Hotel – leading an impressive 60-member delegation of American business leaders seeking investment opportunities in the country.
This is a positive indication for the country as Ghana is among four African countries that the US seeks to deepen commercial ties with. Ross explained that Ghana, Ethiopia, Kenya and Cote’d’Ivoire stand to benefit from over US$5.4billion in US investments since Africa is very important to the global economy.
This brings in its wake a lot of optimism, since American money, business partnerships and expertise will go a long way to complement the country’s development. Ross stated that this investment partnership is indicative of how the US is moving away from an aid-based relationship to a trade partnership, and we are impressed because it tallies with our own mantra of ‘moving beyond aid’.
Government has been consolidating fiscal discipline and the Vice President, Alhaji Mahumudu Bawumia, assured the American delegation that even when the country exits the IMF programme, fiscal discipline will still be pursued and maintained.
He indicated government’s resolve to lay a solid macroeconomic foundation for businesses and the private sector to grow, and set about enumerating some of the gains chalked-up since taking office. This is indeed heartwarming, especially as Ross indicated that American firms operating in the country are required to abide by an anti-corrupt practices Act passed by Congress in 1977.
This also entails that American businesses will demand transparency and accountability of us in their dealings, and we should endeavour to be up to the task so that it serves to be a win-win situation for everyone when competition is fair and open.
We are confident that the country’s good governance credentials and the fact that we are an oasis of peace and stability was an abiding influence in the choice of the country being earmarked for American money to be invested here.
Countries that the US invests heavily in like Japan and South Korea tend to be thriving economies, and we are excited because we believe the partnership should witness quality infrastructure development and the creation of jobs for the teeming mass of unemployed youths in the country.