As the government of Ghana seeks ways of developing the northern Savannah territories covering five regions, Chinese firms have expressed great interest in boosting that agenda.
China Henan Jianghai Group Investment Company Ltd is to spearhead match-making between Chinese firms and local Ghanaian companies working in the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA).
Chairman of the Henan Jianghai Group, Yin Fuyou, told Xinhua at the recent China-Ghana Economic Forum held here that Chinese firms would invest across the entire value chain of agriculture in the Savannah zone.
“What we see in the SADA zone is a lot of opportunities, but what we would like to start with is agriculture which we believe is the fundamental sector to start with. First we will select the companies in the SADA zone with high performance,” Yin said through an interpreter.
The government established the SADA to spearhead the development of the Savannah zone seen as the poorest in Ghana in order to bridge the development chasm.
“These Chinese Companies are not limited to just one very specific area, but we have companies from the whole value chain which starts from the growers to food processing to value added product making. For example, there are giant vocational training and polytechnic schools in China and now we want to introduce these into Ghana because we believe human resource capacity building will be the fundamental for any industrialization,” Yin added.
He said the Henan Jianghai Group will therefore present these institutions to Ghanaians, hoping that they would be able to work with local polytechnic schools not only in the northern regions of Ghana but also the whole Ghana.
The China-Ghana Economic Forum was organized by the Chinese embassy in Ghana in conjunction with government of Ghana led by the SADA Secretariat.
Adam Suley, Chairman of the SADA Board welcomed the decision of the Chinese firms to invest in the SADA zone.
“China is not a new friend of Ghana, the relationship dates back to 1960 when the two states first established diplomatic relations. A landmark of this flourishing relationship is the Ghana National Theater building built by the Chinese government,” the chairman recalled.
He said the management of SADA was happy to “welcome a trusted old friend of Ghana to its zone. Through our mandate, we can help you invest in our zone.”
Suley urged the Chinese firms not to hesitate in bringing investment into the SADA zone as there are enormous opportunities for all investors.
He told the gathering that opportunities were abounding in the zone, and there was an available database while the economic fundamentals were also good with many attractive guarantees for sustained investment.
“While welcoming you to invest in our part of the country, I must entreat you to act fairly with the people and comply with SADA’s core values of sustainability, professionalism, integrity and accountability, respect for diversity and gender, impact and trust,” the chairman maintained.
Abu Sakara Foster, a private sector player in the SADA zone, said local firms need to work hard to position themselves well in order to take advantage of the opportunities presented by the Chinese investors.
He added: “I think the first thing is that there is an institutional partnership between the governments of Ghana and China, through its embassy to create a platform where different companies can come together to prioritize the SADA interventions.”
Foster said there must be local investments first and foremost in order to make local companies attractive for partnerships with the Chinese firms.
“Now it is important to recognize that those companies themselves should do something; undertake some interventions, to put themselves in a position where they are good partners for companies,” he observed. Enditem
Source: Justice Lee Adoboe, Xinhua/NewsGhana.com.gh