The Association of Ghana Industries says it is looking forward to government taking immediate steps to support industries to deal with the current economic difficulties.
The Accra Regional Chairman of the AGI, Tsonam Cleanse Akpeloo, said the current global challenges had cascaded into economic and financial difficulties with negative consequences for businesses and trade.
He said businesses were desirous of navigating the economic difficulties, especially the high dollar exchange rate, the multiplicity of the taxes, the rising cost of goods and services, and the impact on the high cost of production.
“Everybody should know that what we are calling for as industry is stability of the economy. We want to go to the market with a stabilised currency because as it is now it is difficult to predict anything when you sit in a boardroom with your suppliers,”
“We think if there is any dispensation that we need more funding, it is now due to the economic situation that we find ourselves in. I believe this is an opportune time to support our members find the appropriate funding sources and opportunities to help in their businesses.”
He called on the government to take a second look at the policies that allow for free importation of finished products, especially those that the country has the capacity to produce locally.
“All of us here are determined to supply and produce. What we need is a support to produce locally not to import finished products,” he added.
He urged stakeholders to explore alternative funding sources for industry, especially the SMEs, and come out with innovative ways to receive collateral free funds.
Mr Raphael Kojo Ayittey, National Treasurer AGI, said the Association, especially the leadership, would not relent in its effort to ensure that businesses were able to connect to the market, adding that there is hope for the future.
He said the Association was holding to the assurances by the Ghana Revenue Authority to review the VAT regime, considering all concerns of industry. will be well taken.
Also, the government gave the assurance that the benchmark discount value policy would be fully reversed in the upcoming budget statement for 2023 while duty waiver on imported raw materials for manufacturers will be further discussed.
“So, I want to reiterate that there is hope for the future. But we just need to be strong. We mustn’t allow anything to bring us down after they said the darkest hour comes before the light. But I want us as industry players do our homework.
The Accra Regional Annual Meeting of the association was on the theme: “Leveraging private/public collaboration to accelerate sustainable industrial development – Focus on funding sources and opportunities.”