Deputy Chief Executive Officer for the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), Albert Kassim Diwura, has encouraged exporters in the country to collaborate among themselves to reach bigger markets like the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).
He explained that with changing trends on the global market, businesses in the country should not focus on competing among themselves when there are bigger markets outside the country. They should rather concentrate on the benefits they will derive when they collaborate to meet demand.
Speaking at the maiden edition of the GEPA Export School in Kumasi, Ashanti Region, Mr. Diwura advised participants to form partnerships to enable them compete well in the AfCFTA.
“What I want to stress is the need to collaborate among ourselves; it is not about competition. This time, it is about collaboration and networking because the world needs a lot of products and one person might not provide it all.
“The entire country wants to succeed in the AfCFTA, therefore we need to collaborate among ourselves to push our goods out there,” he emphasised.
Touching on need for the export school, Mr. Diwura noted that exports from the country over the years have not met demand.
Therefore, as part of the National Export Development Strategy, he said GEPA ensures this school happens at least once in a year to help build the capacity of exporters to meet up with current trends.
“We seek to build the capacity of exporters because it’s a global trade. You don’t sit in Ghana and expect you will be able to compete favourably with the rest of the world with the knowledge that you have. And so, we work with the International Trade Centre (ITC), and other institutions to make sure that we bring the knowledge of exporters up to speed so they’re able to compete favourably with their competitors around the world. Export evolves, so if we don’t build their capacity they may fall short along the line,” he stressed.
He further highlighted that participants will be educated on social media/online marketing, specifications, export quality management, details of the AfCFTA, packaging and labelling, basic book-keeping, introduction to legal contracts & negotiations among other important topics.
Mr. Kassim Diwura further expressed optimism that exports, when done appropriately, will strengthen the country’s economy – and hence urged the youth to take it seriously.
“If we get it right with exports as a country, the Ghana cedi will be strengthened against foreign currencies and the economy will boom. So, we are encouraging the youth to take this business seriously. With exports, you can create your own jobs and employ others,” he said.
The Assistant Commissioner of Immigration (ACI), Constance Boateng – who is the Deputy Commander-Ghana Immigration Service for Ashanti Region, noted that his outfit gives advisory services to exporters; especially when the need arises for them to travel to meet their business partners and vice versa.