The Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) has urged investors to capitalise on the Central Region’s untapped economic potential to grow their companies and create jobs in the region.
It said doing so would help the local economy, provide jobs and speed up the region’s socioeconomic growth.
This was made known during the GIPC’s Central Regional Sensitisation tour earlier in the month to show traditional leaders and the metropolitan municipal and district assemblies (MMDAs) the importance of making land available for investment.
The tour also sought to give small and medium enterprises (SMEs) the platform to state factors that impede their growth.
The programme brought together planners, economists, metropolitan, municipal and district chief executives (MMDCEs) and business owners in the region.
The Head of Monitoring and Evaluation at the GIPC, Dr George Asafo-Agyei, indicated that the region had other areas which were productive and needed to be tapped, aside from the tourism and hospitality industry which had been largely advertised.
He stressed that “investors must take advantage of the agro-processing sector, tourism, property and real estate and Information and Communications Technology (ICT) opportunities in the region to even expand their market and provide job avenues in the region.”
Dr Asafo-Agyei reiterated that his outfit would not relent on its mandate of encouraging investments for the creation of an attractive incentive framework and a transparent, predictable and facilitating environment for investments in the region.
He said those who registered their businesses could receive all the necessary papers in five statutory working days after registration.
He urged domestic and international organisations to register with the GIPC because it provided a variety of services, including joint venture facilitation, investment consulting services, assistance in negotiating bilateral investment treaties and investment incentives.
Insisting that business owners should take advantage of the package that the GIPC offered to register, he brought up the low level of business registration that had occurred in the area over the years.
He said between 1994 and 2021, only 154 businesses had been registered, while four had been registered in the last three years, which was quite discouraging.
The Central Regional Minister, Justina Marigold Assan, asked all MMDAs to create investment and development plans and to show clearly how they would use them to expand local commercial companies.
She said “the local businessmen and women are important, given the fact that their activities generate wealth for the MMDAs, the region and the country as a whole.”
Regarding the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), she said the initiative presented a significant chance to support the diversification of African exports, draw foreign direct investment and spur economic growth as the rest of the world faced the COVID-19 pandemic’s effects.
She stated that meetings within the continent would be based on company profiles and a project catalogue developed from the GIPC’s business tour of the region, which would lead to collaborations and trade links that would be uniting and fruitful.
“One major output of this programme will be the Land Banks, District Investor Guides and Project Profiles. These are crucial tools that would attract investments and make Ghana the preferred location for Foreign Direct Investments,” she noted.