The UK-Ghana Chamber of Commerce has been named International Chamber of the Year 2023 by the British Chambers of Commerce. The Executive Director, Adjoba Kyiamah, spoke to us about the strength of the Chamber and Ghana’s attractiveness.
The UK-Ghana Chamber of Commerce (UKGCC) was established in 2016 to promote trade between the UK and Ghana. It is the leading private sector organisation proffering trade and commerce support for UK and Ghana businesses.
The UKGCC provides exceptional support for its members through the sharing of knowledge and ideas, creating platforms for building stronger networks and providing linkages with the Government and its agencies. One of its key foci is to see Ghana become a significant economic partner for the UK as an export market, import source, investment destination and vice versa. It exists to further the business interests of its members across both countries and create more business opportunities.
The UKGCC is backed by the British and Ghana Governments through the UK-Ghana Business Council and the British Chambers of Commerce in the UK, and is Africa Scotland Business Network Strategic Partner.
What is the strength of your nomination as the International Chamber of the Year 2023, by the British Chambers of Commerce?
The strength of our nomination, and subsequent win as the BCC’s International Chamber of the Year 2023 is based on several factors. Chief amongst them is how we have been able to home in on the needs of our member companies and provide bespoke solutions. It has required constant engagement with member companies, and leveraging our wide network of stakeholders, including both the UK and Ghana government agencies and civil society organisations; and the global network of British Chambers of Commerce to deliver meaningful solutions. The judges were wowed by the UKGCC’s keen eye for detail and the way it had wired into the issues that really made a difference to its members. They praised its hard work to promote trade with the UK, and its impressive advocacy work around tax laws.
How are you going to maintain this standard?
UKGCC exists because of its member companies. To maintain this standard, it is therefore key that we continue our frequent engagements with them. It is through these engagements that we identify their needs. After this, we can explore appropriate solutions and deliver them efficiently.
What is the attractiveness of Ghana and why do investors and tourists go there?
Ghana has a robust market-based economy with comparatively, few market access barriers. Ghana has signed several bilateral investment and trade treaties and double taxation agreements that provides some investment guarantee and protection. Ghana permits up to 100% foreign ownership of entities and 100% repatriation of profit and dividends after tax.
Ghana has four free zone enclaves or Export Processing Zones (EPZs), where companies or partnerships incorporated in Ghana are required to export at least 70% of their total annual production whilst enjoying some form of incentives.
Government has in place a Public- Private Partnership (PPP) policy, that governs all government- private sector-led projects and concessions. The policy allows for various delivery models such as Build–Operate–Transfer (BOT), Build–Own–Operate–Transfer (BOOT), Build–Own–Operate (BOO), Build–Lease–Transfer (BLT), Build-Transfer (BT), Build-Transfer-Operate (BTO), Contract-Add-Operate (CAO), Develop-Operate-Transfer (DOT), Rehabilitate-Own-Operate (ROO), Build-Own-Operate-Maintain (BOOM). Under the policy, contracts or concessions are awarded by a competitive process or unsolicited proposals.
Ghana is also endowed with numerous tourist locations, including nature reserves, iconic castles and forts, such as the Cape Coast Castle, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, that make it an ideal tourism hotspot.
Visits to Ghana have also received a boost from the Ghana Government-supported Year of Return campaign, an annual event which brings in foreigners, especially the black diaspora, to Ghana.
Told to Alain Metodjo