Business News of Thursday, 3 August 2017
The Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta has said that the Ghana Import-Export Bank (EXIM Bank) must focus on helping exploit the full potential of the non-traditional exports which could yield about US$4 billion in export annual earnings this year.
According to the Mr. Ofori-Atta, the bank established last year by Act 911 must focus specifically on non-traditional exports products such as poultry, cassava, cashew, oil palm and pharmaceuticals which have the potential to facilitate the country’s export trade and enhance socio-economic development.
Speaking at the inauguration of the board of the EXIM Bank, the Minister in a speech read on his behalf by his deputy Kweku Kwarteng, said: “The President expects the board to come out with prudent policies and programs that will ensure that the exporters are well-resourced, be it financing exportable products and services so that the nation can reap appreciable foreign exchange from the sector.”
The Finance Minister said the role of the EXIM Bank is crucial to the vision of the Akufo-Addo government which has set a target to reverse the country’s import-driven economy.
“As you may be aware, the vision of the President is to make Ghana an export-led economy and thereby change the structure of the economy hence the One District, One Factory initiative,” the Minister said.
Last year, NTEs fetched the country US$2.643 billion compared to US$2.55 billion in 2015, representing 2.3 percent increase.
The 2016 NTEs export earnings meant that NTE contributed to 23 percent of the country’s total exports in 2016. The earnings of the NTEs were achieved on the back of three main sub-sectors; agriculture, processed and semi-processed products and handicrafts.
According to the board chair, Kwadwo Boateng Genfi, the bank will ensure that it executes judiciously the mandate entrusted it by driving export revenue, facilitating cross-border trade and generating employment.
“My board will, as a matter of policy, explore, maintain and deepen the business relationship with other Exim Banks including, Indian Exim Bank, Africa Export Import Bank, China Exim Bank to mention but a few,” he added.
Members of the board include; CEO of the Exim Bank, Lawrence Agyinsam; Ofosu A. Tetteh Kujorjie of the Ministry of Finance; Deputy Trade and Industry Minister – Robert Ahomka-Lindsay.
The rest include the 2nd Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Johnson P. Asiama; Akilu Sayibu of the Ghana Export and Promotion Authority; Nana Appiagyei Dankawoso I, representing private sector industry associations; Peter Kwame Abrebese (President’s Nominee) as well as Catherine Quaidoo – President’s nominee.