Business in Ghana

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Posts Tagged ‘EPA’

The EPA Is In Alignment With The Development Agenda Of Ghana

Posted by Business in Ghana on May 10, 2014

Franklin Codjoe, IMANI Ghana

As many Ghanaians await the follow up meeting to the meeting with the ECOWAS Heads of State on the subject of the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPA) with the European Union (EU), the position of Ghana and the entire ECOWAS region remains unclear. As was highlighted in the previous IMANI report (http://www.imanighana.com/2014/04/imani-report-evidence-based-support-for-ghana-to-ratify-the-epa/), the decision of whether to ratify the Regional EPA or not, impacts mostly Ghana, Nigeria and Cote D’Ivoire. Of these three, Nigeria has categorically opposed signing the EPA ‘as is’, and Cote D’Ivoire’s has signed the EPA with a strong indication that it will ratify before the deadline of October 1, 2014.

President Mahama’s Views on the EPA

Ghana’s position on the EPA is clouded with ambiguity, even at the level of the Presidency with vague assurances, such as ‘Ghana will continue to play a facilitating role in the signing of the EPA…’[i], ‘[Ghana] will not hasten to append the country’s signature to the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union (EU)…any decision that we eventually take, which I [the President] assure you, will be in the best interest of Ghana’[ii], and ‘it will be disastrous if we implement the EPA unilaterally as individual countries…Ghana is in favour of the negotiation of a sub-regional EPA’[iii]. Unfortunately, the President has only managed to convey that, Ghana will dance to the tune of the ECOWAS region, whatever the decision may be. Read the rest of this entry »

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Addicted To Free. Critical News, 4th May 2014

Posted by Business in Ghana on May 4, 2014

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

Not sure if I should really care if Lt. Col. Gbevlo Lartey has been sacked, transferred or side swiped.  I am not his biggest fan, the way he handled security issues and I was increasingly becoming concerned listening to his views on how community issues demand the attention of National Security.  And I have a few burning issues in my “Kume Preko” history I could discuss with him, judicial process allowing and if my confidence in citizen protection was far enough above ground.

So when I read he was no longer Security Coordinator, I kinda hoped it wouldn’t be one of those messages Government would come out and deny.  But true, he is out and a replacement has already been announced, unlike Victoria Hammah’s replacement, which only came this week.

Our southern neighbor and until recently the largest economy in Africa South, is in election fever. The ANC is under considerable pressure, perceived as corrupt and not delivering election promises (it rings a chord) but they have very little danger of an election loss.  Moving ahead, Mandela’s ANC and concerns of SA losing its status on the World stage, since Nigeria rebased their indicators and upstaged them, has become an election issue.  And they will fight back while the Black Star is losing its luminescence. Read the rest of this entry »

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The only free cheese…

Posted by Business in Ghana on April 23, 2014

By Charles Wereko-Brobby (Dr), Chief Policy Analyst. Ghana Institute for Policy Options (GIPPO)

I got into a spot of bother recently for ‘putting the knife’ to one of our sacred cows. I put our civil society organizations (CSOs) into the same field as our politicians, opining that they only call on others to act instead of them taking charge and leading. Now I find it necessary, nay imperative, that I must return and train the full bores of my double-barreled guns onto the civil society organizations again, but without a hinge of apology this time, no matter what brouhaha ensues

Last Thursday, the Government of Ghana organised a stakeholder consultation on the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union. Arrogating themselves to the role of our stakeholders, the CSOs thronged the meeting with an assortment of politicians, producers, and the Great and the Good of Ghanaian ruling classes to do what our leaders always do best, namely to shout over the rafters about what we do not want, but without offering any alternatives whatsoever.

When the assembled folks found the Head of the EU Delegation in Ghana in their midst, they turned their guns onto him and bayed “Dzulo” ( Thief) with the shrillness and excitement that normally leads to a mob lynching without guilt being established. Claude Maerten, one of the gentlest souls I have met, had to be bundled and hurried out of the meeting like a cat on a hot tin roof; by a mob led by the representatives of the CSOs. Read the rest of this entry »

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Epa Banku and Okro Soup. Critical News, 20th April 2014

Posted by Business in Ghana on April 20, 2014

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

This week has been about Economic Partnership Agreements (EPA) and how some Civil Service Organisations (CSO) are determined to “protect” Ghana by blocking the Government’s intention, if they can do so, to sign the EPA with the European Union.

We left the International Conference Center, Thursday after a somewhat rowdy interruption against the presence of Claude Maerten of the EU delegation when he requested to make a few points.  In the end, we did not quite get to question time and wrap up, the Minister was late for a flight and we all left with the blankness of wasted time.

I certainly felt so and headed for my favorite Banku and Okro soup joint, comfort food, preceded by a small bottle of Club beer.  I also like the place (can’t mention the name for good reasons) because the two sisters who run the joint are exceptionally favored by nature, with hips and style you leave extra tips with very little effort, if for nothing else than to entice a smile from either of these Madonna.

Negotiations on this EPA have been going on for fourteen years since the Cotonou Agreement.  I don’t think we should continue dragging it any longer.  What are we protecting?  Banku and Okro soup?  Import trade in the EU region in 2010 was over 3trillion dollars.  That is the equivalent of ninety-six times our GDP. Read the rest of this entry »

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See Saw, Down and Down. Critical News, 13th April 2014

Posted by Business in Ghana on April 13, 2014

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

Barclays says the economy is on a downward rollFitch says stable down to negativeIMF revised growth down from 8% to 4.8%Reuters says currency has depreciated 14.6% this year, down in comparison to the same time last year.  The Africa Center for Economic Transformation (ACET) says we have transformed backwards and we all in Ghana who belong to any credible independent think tank, buy kenkey from Osu or have an independent analytical view, say Ghana has gone down and lost its economic alleyway.

But our Government says things are looking up, so which seesaw are you riding?  Where is this economic seesaw headed if not bloated-debt down?  By the way, Government has still not taken up my suggestion to publish a list of all borrowed money and purposeful use.  How dare my impudent self, suggesting such a good governance thing?

As children you remember how you get on a seesaw and if the heavy dude in the neighborhood sits opposite, you know you don’t have a chance in Kotobabi to leverage your weight down hard enough to enjoy the thrill of the up and down.  You won’t even get the chance to crunch down and bump the other side higher into the air or even the sudden jump off to see how the opponent arrives to earth.  The children still do it today. Read the rest of this entry »

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