The Member of Parliament (MP) for Obuasi West, Mr. Kwaku Kwarteng, has urged the government to cut the waste and corruption in the system and support declining industries.
“The current government’s appetite for spending more money than it has will only lead to further depreciation of the cedi and affect industry,” he explained.
Mr. Kwarteng conceded that the government could not be responsible for all the factors contributing to industrial decline, but a responsive government attitude to industry could save many of the suffering companies.
He said the Association of Ghana industries (AGI), for example, cited high cost of production (relative to gold prices) as the reason for its present difficulties.
A close look at the cost profile of the company, Mr. Kwarteng said, revealed that the cost of electricity and the falling value of the cedi were two important contributors to its current distress.
The MP said, in both cases, a responsive government policy could have made a difference.
He said it was unacceptable to look on while the industries that should produce and bring in foreign exchange folded up.
“Government should cut the waste and the corruption, and support our declining industries. We must and can find the money,’’ he stressed.
Mr. Kwarteng wondered why the government would make dubious payments to companies like Subah InfoSolutions while lamenting that it could not raise the money to support our suffering industries.
He, therefore, asked the government to avoid such payments and plan for industrial growth
He observed that, erratic power supply and the cost of electricity to industries had been mentioned by industry players as serious setbacks to the growth of business.
Mr. Kwarteng asked where the strategies to match power demand with supply were.
What was the government’s policy response to industries’ growing cost of production as a result of high tariffs for industrial power?
“The option of political leadership looking on unconcerned as industries suffer and fold up should no longer be entertained. It is time for the Mahama administration to sit up,” Mr. Kwarteng emphasised.