Fifth UK Ghana Business Council held to strengthen mutual partnership


The fifth UK-Ghana Business Council was hosted virtually by Jubilee House on Tuesday 15 June. Co-chaired by Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia and UK Minister for Africa James Duddridge, the meeting reflected on the achievements of the UK-Ghana partnership over the past year including in the security sector following the recent visit of the UK Home Secretary Priti Patel.

Since the last meeting of the UKGBC, the UK-Ghana economic partnership has supported more than £223m of investment in infrastructure across the country, the biggest UK investment into infrastructure in Ghana in a generation.

This investment has significantly development the country’s critical infrastructure, combining UK support and expertise with Ghanaian skills and entrepreneurship to build roads, bridges, hospitals, water infrastructure, airports and the expansion of Kumasi market.

Council members discussed the progression of key projects that have grown out of the work of the UKGBC, such as supporting work to create jobs and build sustainable industry in the auto, garments and pharma sectors through the UK’s £12m JET programme and the ongoing the construction of the Tema to Afloa road. The £80.3m project, supported by UKEF, will grow and improve transport links across the country and ultimately West Africa whilst creating skilled jobs for Ghanaians.

British High Commissioner to Ghana Iain Walker, Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for Africa Emma Wade-Smith, Chairman of the CDC Group Sir Graham Wrigley and CEO of UK Export Finance Louis Taylor also attended the Council alongside Ghana’s Minister of Trade and Industry Alan Kyerematen, Minister of Defence Dominic Nitiwul, Minister for Public Enterprises Joseph Osei Owusu and Senior Adviser to the President Yaw Osafo Maafo.

Delegates welcomed the signing of the UK-Ghana Trade Partnership Agreement recognising this as the foundation for a strengthened trading relationship securing tariff-free access for products sold in British shops as well as supporting jobs in Ghana and helping both nations to build back better from COVID-19.

Speaking after the meeting, British High Commissioner to Ghana Iain Walker said: “Today’s fifth UK-Ghana Business Council UK recognised the long and enduring partnership between our nations and the real progress we have made since the Council was established in 2018.

“Together the UK and Ghana have worked to encourage economic diversification, seen new investment in manufacturing and improved tax policy and signed a Trade Partnership Agreement that will support Ghana’s own priorities in trade and investment, and ensure that our mutually partnership strengthens.”

During the meeting the UK government announced a new support programme for the Ministry of Finance and Ghana Revenue Authority, this collaboration will increase tax revenue and strengthen the country’s tax policy and administration.

Minister Duddridge reiterated the UK’s full support of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) and again welcomed Ghana’s successful hosting of the AfCFTA Secretariat. Both Council Chairs acknowledged the challenges and opportunities ahead as both Ghana and the UK continue the fight against climate change and collaborate to build a cleaner, greener future.

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