President John Dramani Mahama says Ghana is looking forward to an exciting 2014 in which the pace of economic development and prosperity will be quickened.
He said he had consequently invited the country’s development partners to join the government in efforts aimed at realising the dream.
President Mahama was speaking at a cocktail party he hosted for members of the Diplomatic Corps at the Peduase Lodge Wednesday evening.
The event was used to exchange ideas and greetings between the President and the Diplomatic Corps for work done in the previous year and renew commitments towards the current year’s development initiatives.
President Mahama commended the members of the Diplomatic Corps for the effective manner in which they had handled their affairs, and expressed the hope that this year would even be more fruitful.
He said the government was working assiduously to address the economic challenges that confronted the nation to ensure better living conditions for the people.
In that respect, he said, financial discipline would be the hallmark of the government.
Ghana, he said, needed expanded infrastructure to quicken the pace of development, an objective which had necessitated the establishment of the Ghana Infrastructure Fund.
President Mahama said Ghana would regularly implement the ECOWAS protocol on integration in order to take advantage of its inherent benefits.
Consequently, he said, efforts would be made to ensure that the common monetary convergence was achieved by 2015.
Another area of importance the President touched on concerned the trade barriers that continued to be a major challenge to integration, and said Ghana was committed to moving faster to get rid of the challenge.
President Mahama expressed concern about political crises that had caused dislocations in some African countries, notably the Central African Republic, Mali, Guinea Bissau, and South Sudan, and said Ghana was deeply involved in peace processes to restore order to the troubled nations.
He called for peace in resolving the disputes rather than the resort to violence.
President Mahama said Ghana now had 126 missions and four new ones would come on board this year.
Besides, he said, 27 new envoys would be posted to various destinations this year.
Non-compliance of social security laws
The President lamented the practice where some foreign missions in Ghana that had employed Ghanaians failed to pay their social security contributions.
He called for change, since the practice was against the laws of the nation.
Dean of Diplomatic Corps
Earlier, the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps and Ambassador of Zimbabwe, Mrs Pavlin Tendaye, said the international community solidly stood behind Ghana in her quest to maintain an enviable place in continental advancement.
She said the diplomatic missions welcomed Ghana’s efforts at implementing the Millennium Development Goals.
She said the diplomatic community was looking forward to Ghana hosting the Pan-African Summit on Equality this year.
Mrs Tendaye said as inequality became a global issue, Ghana’s voice would once again be heard in tackling the canker.