Sep 18, 2009, 4:17 AM
Organised by ECOWAS in collaboration with the Ghana Chamber of Commerce and Industry at the Accra International Conference Centre, the two-day forum brought together investors from
Among others, it was aimed at maximizing the inflow of foreign direct investment (FDI) from
The forum saw presentations by key business, trade and investment discussions by private sector and government operatives from the two sides, and one-on-one networking sessions.
It focused on attracting additional Chinese investments into the power sector and development, healthcare and pharmaceuticals, agro-food and allied services, mining, as well as information and communications technology (ICT).
The forum followed a high-level ministerial delegation’s visit in June 2011 to
The delegation, among others, discussed with ECOWAS ambassadors in
According to officials, the achievements of that visit included the signing of several memoranda of understanding and contracts between key Chinese institutions and the governments of
The rise of
Over the past two decades, the growth rate recorded by the Chinese economy has been incredible.
Financial experts forecast that the Gross Domestic Product of China shall hit $9,982.08 billion in 2015, with a growth rate put at 10-12 percent per year between 2010 and 2015.
“This forum should provide us with a platform to better advance the cause for greater equity in the global economic arena, so that more and more countries in the ECOWAS zone could enter the highway of development,” Ghana’s Vice President John Dramani Mahama said, in a speech read on his behalf by Ghana’s minister of foreign Affairs at the opening session.
Mahama called on governments in the sub-region to provide every opportunity to the private sector operators to play their role in stimulating growth and employment in their respective economies, stressing that while governments had a role to play, in the long run sustainability would only be achieved through the growth and expanded output of the private sector.
He expressed the hope that participants on both sides would understand the business opportunities available in the ECOWAS zone, and equip themselves with the right strategies and plans to maximise returns on their investments.
Mr Kadre Desire Ouedraogo, President of ECOWAS Commission, said the regional body was ready and prepared to work with
“It is also important to state that in conformity with our vision of an ECOWAS of the people, we want to assure
Mr Ouedraogo expressed the hope that the forum would help develop a strong partnership to effectively promote economic development between
Mr Yu Ping, Vice Chairman of China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, underscored
The President of the Federation of the West African Manufacturer’s Association (FEWAMA), Alhaji Bashir Borodo, complained that some ECOWAS states have fallen victim to the Chinese onslaught on their private sectors leading to their closure, as well as threatening to break the existing bond and friendship.
Ghana’s deputy Trade and Industry Minister, Dr. J.S Annan, announced plans by his government to implement a five-year industrial sector support programme (ISSP) intended to encourage growth in the business sector.
The project, he said, will cost 350 million dollars.
He encouraged Chinese investors to take advantage of fair trade policies existing in West African states to expand their investments.
The maiden event in