The Deputy Director-General of Trade and Investment South Africa and Trade Invest Africa (TIA) Ms Lerato Mataboge has said that South Africa is keen on balancing two-way trade with Ghana and key to achieving this, would be the identification of new investment and trade opportunities between the two respective countries.
Mataboge said that it was imperative for South African businesses to invest in Ghana in order to support economic diversification and create value-chains; as well as for the improved presence of Ghanaian goods and services in the South African market.
“Today’s gathering offers our respective businesspeople the opportunity to renew the economic relationship and strengthen economic ties. We are here to deliberate on how we can collectively address our two countries’ challenges to economic growth by beneficiating our resource endowments, accelerating infrastructure development, creating value chains and deepening regional integration,” said Mataboge.
Mataboge further mentioned that opportunities in aviation, tourism and construction, liquefied natural gas, warehousing as well as agro-processing and other agricultural production in Ghana have been identified for collaboration going forward.
“We are ready to work with Ghana to contribute to the realisation of some of their infrastructure and manufacturing project deliverables that are listed in their investment projects priority list,” she indicated
Today’s gathering offers our respective businesspeople the opportunity to renew the economic relationship and strengthen economic ties
Mataboge concluded by saying the aim for the Business Forum was to ramp-up efforts for investment facilitation between South Africa and Ghana over the next two years so as to reach the respective countries’ investment targets.
“Ghana has a target of USD 2.8 billion this year alone, South Africa has a target of USD 100 billion over the next 5 years.There remains a lot of room for growth in terms of engagements between the private sectors of our two countries and in fostering more public – private partnerships. Our discussions today should result in a clear way forward in terms of short to medium term goals for forging a stronger bilateral trade and investment relationships. This is the plan that our two Heads of State will expect from us,” she said.
The Ghana Director-General of Investment Promotion, Mr Yofi Grant called for a regionalisation of African economies.
“As Africa we cannot continue exporting resources to the other world and playing an insignificant role in the lower base end of the economy. We are looking for real African partnerships in oil, and gas exploration, rail, road infrastructure, real estate, the establishment of industrial parks and agriculture,” he said.
Grant added that Ghana had a thriving community of South Africa businesses plying their trade in his country.
“I believe that these companies are placed in the best position to give testimonies on the welcoming business climate that awaits prospective investors in my country,” said Grant.