The Volta Regional Coordinating Council (VRCC) has paid courtesy calls to some Embassies in Accra to deepen existing bilateral ties and seek new grounds for partnership and cooperation.
Dr Archibald Yao Letsa, the Regional Minister, who led the delegation, visited the Suriname Embassy, Colombia and the Indian High Commission and had warm and fruitful discussions for mutual social and economic benefits.
The Minister told the Ghana News Agency in an interview that the visit was to foster bilateral and technical cooperation between the VRCC, the business community in the region on one hand and the diplomatic missions, Embassies and their countries on the other hand for a win-win partnership.
The delegation visited Ms Fidelia Graand-Galon, the Suriname Ambassador to Ghana, where discussions focused on agri-business, tourism, healthcare delivery and capacity building.
Key on the agenda also was exploring twinning partnership in a Sister-City Relationships.
Similar bilateral and technical cooperation discussions were held with the Ambassador of Colombia to Ghana, Ms Claudia Turbay Quintero, on the need for fruitful partnerships between the Region, the Colombia Embassy and the Regions of Colombia.
Dr Letsa described the events as forward-looking and held lots of prospects for business enterprises in the region as well as its people.
“We shall continue to hold working cooperation and engagements with the Embassies, as VRCC agenda towards raising the investment portfolios and production outcomes towards making the local economy buoyant.”
The next stop was the visit to the Indian High Commissioner to Ghana, Mr Sugandh Rajaram.
Dr Letsa said the initiative was a well-positioned vehicle that provided an opportunity to showcase the investment potentials of the Region, including the agenda of transitioning agriculture from farming to the development of an end-to-end agribusiness value-chain to bring increased worth to the players in the industry.
“We are eager to promote the rapid growth of businesses, create jobs for young people and encourage industrial networks among entrepreneurs.”
Reverend Isaac Adja Tetteh, the Regional Planning Officer, said the agricultural, ICT and tourism sectors of the region remained largely untapped, hence the committed focus on making these areas substance for support and cooperation.
He said the “VRCC would continue to explore the low hanging fruits through bilateral and other partnerships with the rest of the world but particularly from Colombia, Suriname and Mexico,” disclosing that the ties between the VRCC and India through its High Commission have gained some traction.
He said some members of the VRCC would be undertaking a study tour of India, a translation from their earlier economic and social ties, specifically, stemming from the Volta Trade and Investment Fair, in an exchange programme.
He said cultural dimension would be brought to bear on the bilateral ties and making chiefs and queens the centre of the transformative agenda of the region.
Rev Tetteh disclosed that the VRCC was exploring relations with Surinamese Maroons, who are descendants of Africans, who fled the colonial Dutch forced labour plantations in Suriname and established an independent community in the interior of rainforests, who have maintained a distinctive identity based on their West African origins.
On the radar is the 2022 Maroons (former slaves) day celebration, which commemorates over 200 years since the signing of a peace treaty between the Maroons and the British, and is marked with a carnival, to epitomise the cultural values of these people including food and dance, is expected to be witnessed by a team from the VRCC in October.
He said the Surinamese people were eager to tap into the ‘Kente’ weaving industry, adding that though ‘gari’ is consumed, they lacked the skills in its production and had expressed strong interest in exchange programmes in these areas, which are being considered strongly.
The delegation included, Mr Etornam James Flolu, District Chief Executive of Afadzato South, who doubles as the Dean of Municipal and District Chief Executives of the region, Mr Geoffrey Badasu, Municipal Chief Executive for Kpando, Mr Emmanuel Gemegah, Municipal Chief Executive for Keta, Mr Seth Yormewu, District Chief Executive for Anloga and Rev Tetteh, the Regional Economic Planning Officer.