GEPA says PPAS can help eliminate dependence on the dollar

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U.S Dollars and Ghana Cedi
U.S Dollars and Ghana Cedi

Mr. Chris Amponsah Sackey, Volta Regional Director of the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), says the Pan-African Payment and Settlement System (PPAS) can help the country avoid the current foreign exchange crisis.

The PASS, as one of key trade instruments under the Africa Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA), creates a platform for fluid cross currency transactions in the Trade Area.

Established by the Afreximbank and the AfCFTA Secretariat, it is expected to save the African continent more than US$5 billion annually in payment transaction costs.

Mr Sackey, who was addressing a capacity enhancement workshop for SMEs on the National Export Development Strategy (NEDS) in Ho, said the PASS could facilitate and sustain trade on the Continent outside the barriers of the dollar and other fleeting foreign currencies.

“The PASS could help eliminate our dependence on the dollar,” he said, asking businesses to take advantage of the structures and make the most of the continental trade consolidation.

The Regional Director said the AfCFTA also had online mechanisms for non-trade barriers as part of protocols established on goods and services and must be embraced.

The workshop brought together SME operators from the middle section of the Volta Region, and was a day long activity of sensitization, and interactive engagements designed to enhance the non-traditional export sector through the NEDS.

Mr Sackey said the NEDS provided a “clear path to moving away from a raw material to a value-added raw material export economy.

“We want to move away from the export of raw materials to non-traditional to increase revenue from exports,” he said, noting the effect on the nation’s gross domestic product.

The Regional Director said it was only through non-traditional products that the Nation’s quest to grow a 25-billion-dollar export economy could be attained, and that the benefits of a well implemented NEDS were immeasurable.

He said the NEDS would cover the job needs of many people, and benefit all along the agriculture value chain.

Mr Sackey exposed participants to the three pillars of the NEDS, which included the need to expand and diversify the supply base of value-added industrial export products and services, and the improvement of the business regulating environment for exports.

The NEDS also seeks to develop and expand needed human capacity for industrial export development and marketing.

A total of 17 primary products have been identified for promotion under the NEDSs, which also has secondary products under promotion.

Local assemblies, especially in the farming rich areas, are to identify at least one exportable product, and which the GEPA would help transform into a non-traditional to enhance the local and national economies.

Beneficiaries were taken through the policy outlooks and legal regimes of the NEDS and non-traditional exports.

They also were engaged in basic internal management systems and had an export dialogue session with key players.

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