Pianim Urges FDI Courting

Chief Executive Officer of New World Investments Ltd. and renowned economist, Mr. Kwame Pianim, has urged policymakers to do more to court foreign direct investments (FDIs) into the country.

Mr. Pianim was speaking at the Canada-Ghana Chamber of Commerce breakfast meeting held in Accra under the theme ‘Moving from aid to trade’, and opined that foreign businesses have the financial muscle and technical know-how (which many local businesses lack) to partner local businesses in order to facilitate their growth and expansion process.

“There is no country that does not need aid. So my thesis is that even in trade we need aid. For example, if a local businessman wants to produce and export to another country, say Canada, and he has a joint venture with a Canadian businessman, it will become easier to export to Canada than the local businessman doing it alone. This is because if there are laws on the other side that are impeding access to their market, the Canadian businessman will work with his government to ease them and eventually make it possible to export the goods to Canada,” he told the B&FT.

He added that apart from the advantage local businesses can derive from forging partnerships with the foreign businessmen, they further provide a market for Ghanaian businesses.

“Another scenario is that if you take the Chinese, they are now specialists in the garments industry. Now their costs have gone up and are willing to relocate some of their plants to Ghana. If they are able to come to Ghana where they already have the market, importers will no longer have to travel to China to bring in goods. So with foreign direct investments, the person comes with his assets to the market -- skills, technology and the money -- so that gradually it becomes a learning process,” the astute economist stated.

Government on the other hand has taken some steps to attract more foreign direct investments into the country.

Recently, the CEO of GIPC Mawuena Trebrah led a trade delegation to join several thousand other interested participants from over 140 countries at the Annual Investment Meeting in Dubai, in a bid to attract foreign direct investments into the country.

B&FT sources at the conference confirmed that the trade mission met success, as it was reported several dozen international investors made enquiries about doing business in Ghana at the event.

Additionally, the Minister for Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, Elisabeth Ofosu-Adjare, said at a conference in Spain that African leaders are poised to address some of the challenges facing the continent in order to attract foreign direct investment (FDI) through development of the tourism sector.

According to a World Investment Report by the UN Conference on Trade and Development, FDI inflows will rise to US$1.5trillion in 2016 and to US$1.7trillion in 2017.