The Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, has outlined strategies government intends to leverage through increased production and exports to engineer growth of the economy.
Mr. Ofori-Atta, in his presentation of the 2024 Budget and Economic Policy of government on November 15, 2023, noted that government has identified strategic industries to anchor growth of the Ghanaian manufacturing sector. These strategic anchor industries, he said, are being implemented by the flagship One District-One Factory (1D1F) programme and facilitated by the Free Zones Authority and Export Promotion Authority in collaboration with the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre.
“Ghana aims to be the regional manufacturing hub for West Africa. The 15-month Growth Strategy leverages on the 1D1F and Free Zones projects to attract investments into the industries and create massive job opportunities in Ghana,” he said.
Promotion of trade, industry and export
The strategy, according to him, seeks to increase export revenue through the Ghana Free Zone Authority (GFZA) and Ghana Export Promotion Agency (GEPA).
The Growth Strategy therefore supports implementing interventions which increase our capacity to produce, deepen value-chains, facilitate and modernise storage facilities and increase the shelf-life of products. These improvements are expected to help support exports, build forex exchange buffers and reduce inflation.
He further detailed that through the set targets, export earnings are expected to increase; with increased job opportunities as well as earnings of licenced Free Zone Companies also seeing an increase, among others.
“Altogether, earnings from Non-traditional Exports are expected to increase to US$4billion (2023) and US$4.8billion (2024), from US$3.51 billion (2022). 271 licenced Free Zone Companies are expected to increase earnings to US$2.19billion in 2024, compared to earnings of US$1.8billion from 207 licenced Free Zone Companies in 2022,” Mr. Ofori-Atta projected.
He also stated key interventions government seeks to employ in improving the country’s business environment.
These interventions include enactment of the Business Regulatory Reform bill to enhance the quality and transparency of regulatory administration and establish a predictable regulatory environment; crowding-in private sector financing of US$20billion through Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) and enhanced public-private dialogues and partnerships; as well a more coordinated and aggressive promotion of FDIs.
The minister also hinted that as part of the interventions, there will be amendments to the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) – for which he said the Act has been completed and submitted to parliament.
The Growth Strategy sets ambitious targets for easing access to the domestic private sector, including medium- and long-term finance at competitive rates.
By setting ambitious targets for easing access of the domestic private sector, including medium and long-term finance at competitive rates, Mr. Ofori-Atta stated that: “Government will leverage plans of the Development Bank of Ghana (DBG), GIRSAL, Venture Capital Trust Fund (VCTF) and Ghana Investment Infrastructure Fund (GIIF) to provide loans, partial guarantees and venture capital to private entities with transformational and strategic projects in Agriculture, Technology and Industry”.