Business News of Saturday, 7 February 2015
President John Mahama has set-up a taskforce to work on the establishment of a Ghana Exim Bank.
The taskforce, which will be chaired by the Chair of the ECOBANK Board of Directors, Lionel Van Lare Dosoo, also includes the Managing Director of GCB Limited, Simon Dornoo and Steve Williams, a banker.
Government announced plans to set-up a Ghana Export-Import Bank in its 2015 Budget and Financial Estimates, as a step towards the strategic positioning of Ghana as an export-led economy.
The Exim Bank is also intended towards transforming the country’s economy.
Finance Minister Seth Terkper announced the plan in Parliament late last year when he presented the 2015 budget and economic statement to the House.
“Mr. Speaker, the transformation agenda, which has been articulated by His Excellency the President clearly indicates the need to transform our economy into an export-oriented economy.
“It is necessary to adopt policies that tilt our economy predominantly towards exports. To achieve the desired transformation, Cabinet has approved the creation of a Ghana Export-Import Bank to lead in the strategic positioning of Ghana as an export-led economy,” he explained.
The establishment of the EXIM Bank, Terkper said, “will also enable us to take advantage of international trade initiatives such as African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), and Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA).”
He said: “The Cabinet approval includes the use of 50 percent of EDAIF funds to set up the bank.”
“Ghana Exim will be a vehicle for the consolidation of the current export finance activities of the EDAIF, Eximguaranty Company and Export Finance Company.
“In this regard, Cabinet also approved the setting up of a Presidential Committee to implement the establishment of the Ghana EXIM Bank,” Terkper added.
The Minister said as part of the export-led development strategy “to boost foreign exchange earnings, in 2015 and in the medium term, government will facilitate the expansion of non-traditional exports from about US$2.3 billion to US$5 billion.”
“At the same time, the country will reduce its reliance on “primary products, especially gold and cocoa and in recent times oil as the main export commodities.”
“The strategy will be to take advantage of the purchasing power of consumers in the ECOWAS, BRICS and other markets,” he said.
Also as part of the expanded export-led development strategy, Terkper said, “government will intensify the campaign to promote made-in-Ghana goods and services.”
A statement signed by Chief of Staff Prosper Bani said the Ghana Exim Bank will be a vehicle for the consolidation of the current export finance activities of the Export Development and Agricultural Investment Fund (EDAIF), Eximguaranty Company and Export Finance Company.
According to the statement, the taskforce will also have representatives from a number of institutions including the Association of Ghana Industries, Export Finance Company, Eximguaranty Company, Ghana Export Promotion Authority, EDAIF and the Federation of Ghanaian Exporters. The others are the Bank of Ghana, Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ministry of Finance and the Attorney General’s Department.