THE DEPUTY Minister of Trade and Industry, Herbert Krapa, has bemoaned Ghana’s share of African trade saying it is low.
He said the figure hovers around 4% despite an annual growth rate of 10.2% of goods exported on the continent since 2015.
According to him, current goods export of the country to Africa stands at $1.4 million, and wants Ghanaian businesses to take advantage of this year’s Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF) to be held in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa from the 15th to the 21st of November 2021.
Speaking at the official Ghana roadshow of IATF in Accra, Mr. Krapa said the continental trade fair provides the opportunity to significantly push up Ghana’s market share and urged all Ghanaian businesses to “fully participate in the fair.”
The Deputy Minister indicated that the Intra-Africa Trade Fair, which is being done in collaboration with the African Union and the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), is an indispensable market access and information sharing hub to help implement and benefit from AfCTA.
“AfCFTA, when fully implemented, will help boost trading among African countries. A major contributing factor to the challenges of the continent is a lack of access to cross-border trade and market information,” he noted.
For him, IATF, which is projected to include $40 billion in trade and investment deals among 55 participatory countries, over 1,100 exhibitors and 10,000 trade visitors and delegates, is relevant in the trade economies of the African continent.
“We are hopeful that this year’s fair will be bigger and much more successful than the IATF 2018,” Mr. Krapa said.
He added, “IATF 2021 will create the platform for Africa’s businesses to exchange ideas, network and learn evolving trends, connect international buyers and businesses, and benefit from business-to-business and business-to-government meetings.”
He asserted that the Government of Ghana, under the steering leadership of President Akufo-Addo, remained committed to the implementation of AfCFTA.
“Ghana has long been a leader in Africa’s regional integration and our President and Government’s unrelated on their ore and taking every step on the way to move the African AfCFTA from paper to reality.”
“The government, through the Ministry of Trade and Industry, will continue to collaborate with the private sector and businesses as strategic partners for the execution of the task at hand,” he assured.
He added, “We will work and forge together in lasting partnership for reaping the dividends boosting intra-Africa trading.”
BY Ernest Kofi Adu