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Employers Want Power Tariffs Reduced
 
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08-Sep-2017  
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Employers have appealed to government to consider revising electricity tariffs downwards to spare them the huge overhead costs that are currently cudgeling businesses and making new employment difficult.

Terence R. Darko, President of the Ghana Employers Association (GEA), in a speech read on his behalf, said: “There is no belabouring the point that as a nation, we can create jobs if we reduce the cost of doing business especially regarding the cost of electricity, water, bureaucracy, and the influx of substandard and counterfeit products, among others.”

He revealed that when it comes to the cost of electricity as an input into manufacturing and productive operations, it was significant to note that worldwide, price processed power was much lower than utility power.

“The GEA believes that government is looking critically at this subject and wishes to encourage it to expedite matters to accelerate the country’s growth.”

Regulatory reforms

As a matter of urgency, Mr Darko also appealed to government to undertake regulatory reforms to remove all barriers in business registration, particularly regulatory reliefs for Small and Medium-scale enterprises (SMEs) in order to increase investments and improve market entry for businesses.

The appeal was premised on a 2016 “Doing Business Ranking Report,’ a publication by the World Bank that ranked countries on the ease of doing business by investors both local and international, which ranked Ghana 108th out of 190 in 2016, 67th in 2013, 112th in 2014 and 111th in 2015.

Mauritius led the African rankings at the 47th position as the best business-friendly nation on the continent.

‘One district, One Factory’

Commending government for its bold industrial transformation agenda, the GEA said the benefits to be derived from the ‘One district, One factory’ policy were enormous.

‘Galamsey’

“The dangers and harmful effects of ‘galamsey’ to our arable lands, rivers and water bodies, forest cover and entire environment cannot be over-emphasised.

“This plunder and degradation of our vegetation must not continue. We therefore fully support the action by government, the security services and especially the media in combating this environmental menace.”

Gov’t reaction

Abena Osei Asare, Deputy Finance Minister, in her keynote address, noted that all the concerns expressed by employers would be considered by government.

However, she said unemployment remained a critical obstacle to sustainable development and stability.

She said more and better jobs were urgently needed in order to maintain social cohesion, wellbeing and ultimately reduce poverty.

“Government, despite the numerous structural and economic challenges, is keen on bringing on board credible policies and providing an enabling environment for businesses to thrive.”

Noting that the National Youth Employment Programme would roll out six new programmes to engage 60,000 young graduates to address unemployment problems, she said that was billed to start by 1st October this year.
 
 
 
Source: Daily Guide
 
 

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