Business in Ghana

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Archive for October, 2013

Rwanda, Côte d’Ivoire, Burundi Lead Sub-Saharan Africa in Improving Business Regulation

Posted by Business in Ghana on October 29, 2013

Washington, D.C., October 29, 2013_A new World Bank Group report finds that Sub-Saharan Africa continues to record a large number of reforms aimed at easing the regulatory burden on local entrepreneurs, with 66 reforms adopted in the past year. Rwanda, Côte d_Ivoire, and Burundi were among the 10 economies globally improving business regulation the most.

Released today, Doing Business 2014: Understanding Regulations for Small and Medium-Size Enterprises finds that of the 20 economies improving business regulation the most since 2009, 9 are in Sub-Saharan Africa: Burundi, Sierra Leone, Guinea-Bissau, Rwanda, Togo, Benin, Liberia, Côte d_Ivoire, and Guinea.

The report_s data show that, of 47 economies in the region, 31 implemented at least one business regulatory reform in 2012/13. Rwanda implemented the most in the region, with reforms in 8 of the 10 areas tracked by Doing Business.  Three African economies made the biggest progress globally in an area measured by the report: Burundi in the ease of registering property, Benin in the ease of trading across borders, and Côte d_Ivoire in the ease of enforcing contracts. Read the rest of this entry »

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Here, There, Everywhere Corruption. Critical News, 27th October 2013

Posted by Business in Ghana on October 27, 2013

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

Before the weekend drew near, I already had my headline in my head and I was raring to start writing even before Sunday came along.  So incensed with the “take your brain elsewhere” (my re-statement) message from Brigadier Nunoo-Mensah, I started crafting my language ahead of the weekend.

What the General said in public was self-indulgent.  That the President and his team found no reason to distance themselves and even managed to chuckle over it in the face of Ghanaians, was decadent.  That we have arrived at a point in our history when a National security Advisor can suggest to its citizens to leave the country if they cannot find a good fit.  They dare to raise their voices in constitutional gripe, so they can single file line-up and trot on to Togo, Burkina, Nigeria and elsewhere, let slip such poor taste, I figured I had enough meat to devote a good measure of language to this disrespect.

In case General Nunoo-Mensah is not aware, the people of this country have sacrificed as much as he has to make Ghana what it is today.  Many of us have stayed on or fought on from outside to make a point about the moral decay and oppression we have had to contend with in past years, not counting the belt tightening and defending the indefensible most times. Read the rest of this entry »

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Conference to Explore West African Regional Financial Integration

Posted by Business in Ghana on October 22, 2013

As the countries of Sub-Saharan Africa build upon their recent economic successes, attention increasingly has focused on the importance of financial sector development in stimulating continued progress.

One key element of this process is cross-border financial integration—a topic that will be the centerpiece of a conference of West African policymakers and financial sector leaders to be held October 28 in Accra, Ghana.

Co-sponsored by the government of Ghana and the IMF, the one-dayconference on the Opportunities and Challenges of Financial Integration in West Africa will bring together senior policymakers from the Economic Community of West African States. Participants will include finance ministers and central bank governors, financial sector representatives, and experts from international financial institutions.

“At a time of rapid and positive economic change in Africa, financial integration has emerged as an increasingly important factor that can help lift the region to the next stage of development,” said Naoyuki Shinohara, IMF Deputy Managing Director, who will co-chair the event. “This is certainly the case for the countries of West Africa, where a dynamic financial environment offers considerable promise—but also some risks.” Read the rest of this entry »

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Reset. Dog-Ctrl, Fitch-Alt, ECG-Delete. Critical News, 20th October 2013

Posted by Business in Ghana on October 20, 2013

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

I am not the only person complaining.  All week I have been talking to friends, asking what we can do to move some action in Governance.

“Massa asem a to yen”, and this from the taxi driver who bullied me into listening to him all the ride from McCarthy Hill to Kanda Estates.  He had a beef and soon as he recognized me from a TV talk show, he was sure I could influence Government to do something about his struggling efforts to eke out a living from “dropping” fares.

Kwame Karikari now owns his taxi.  It has taken him seven years.  When I did the math with him, he had agreed to a repayment plan, which cost him three times more than what he could have borrowed.  What I gathered, and together with his comments, much regrets.  We the “panyin fuo” should have the answers so them “nkodaa” can tow our lines.

Not anywhere near the collective responsibility being seamed to us by Government, forcing a guilt trap because something went horribly wrong between July and December 2012.  Some uncontrolled hand skewed our prior-to-then economic success trumpeted in Parliament and to the world.

It is important to remind this NDC Government that on Wednesday 18th July 2012, they went to Parliament to report that the economy was so robust they requested supplementary spending for the rest of the year.

Let me quote then Finance Minister Dr. Kwabena Duffuor from paragraph 36 of his presentation on the Supplementary Budget to Parliament.  Bear in mind this is July 2012, a week before President Mills died. Read the rest of this entry »

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Burning Fires in Our Backyard. Critical News, 13th October 2013

Posted by Business in Ghana on October 13, 2013

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

Tuesday evening, I am sitting on the porch overlooking the Panbros salt pans from the hilltops of McCarthy Hill.  There is a man across the opposite fence.  I can see him from my lofty perch, dressed in a pair of baggy shorts, no shirt and carrying what looks like a kerosene lantern.  He is walking across from my left to the edge of the open land space he inhabits and I decide to retire, not an interesting scene to keep my attention.

Half hour later, just as I am nodding off, I hear the spat-spatting of what sounds like rainfall and I wonder when I missed the gathering clouds during the day and why is it still raining at this time of year?  Thinking I could use the pattering rainfall to lull myself to sleep, I ignore the event and doze off.

But later, a persistent crackling wakes me up and I sleep-stumble to the balcony to check things out.  The smoke filled balcony and the raging fire beneath me, shocks me out of sleep and I reel from the gathering heat below. Read the rest of this entry »

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Abandoned Stuff. Critical News, 6th October 2013

Posted by Business in Ghana on October 6, 2013

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

Yaw.  Recently WASSCE graduate, now turned Space to Space Entrepreneur, selling airtime top-up to scrape a living, easing the burden on his aging mother, with two other siblings in tow, she trusting that she can find the strength to see all of them through school for a secure late age, with no pension plan and no social security contributions from anywhere she knows.  She sells tomatoes in the market, a risky perishable commodity in these times.  Yaw has no hesitation in telling me his views on where he is in life.

He carries a wiry frame around his five foot eight inches of leanness, acquired only from a deprived upbringing, the early signs of stress showing at the sides of his mouth, but he smiles broadly as we talk.  Not for the first time, mention of God will provide and reference to an all-generous agape God, who he confesses he has every confidence will come through in the end.

He voted NPP, sure that the promise of a free-education Ghana would guarantee that his brother and sister would get a chance he did not have.  He scraped a living in between studies and now at twenty-six when he should be close to starting a management grade job, he dreams not of a future in the queue of unemployed graduate friends, also space to spacing, no work on the horizon for any of them.  It has been like that for three years since they left Legon. Read the rest of this entry »

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