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Thursday, February 18, 2010

Stakeholders say better networking will boost business in Ghana

A stakeholders' meeting on Ghana's investment and business activities on Monday agreed that better networking and access to information among the business community, regulatory bodies, and security agencies can significantly enhance business growth.

The meeting, which was organized by International Business Event Management (IBEM) Ghana, in partnership with some sponsors and stakeholders ahead of an international conference in March, sought to sensitize the Ghanaian business community and foreign investors to the need for better ways to improve their businesses.

The conference dubbed "IGB-Ghana 2010 Conference" and scheduled for March 29 to March 31, 2010, seeks to provide a platform to address difficulties involved in doing business in Ghana and the opportunities and challenges available to potential investors.

It is under the theme: "Investing and Growing Your Business in Ghana: The Challenges and Opportunities".

The meeting, attended by representatives from the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce, Registrar General's Department, the Value Added Tax (VAT) Service, Ghana National Fire Service, Ghana Shippers Authority, businessmen and women among others, shed light on the multiplicity of factors militating against doing and growing business in the country.

Mr Kelvin Fiifi Ampah, Chief Executive Officer of IBEM, Ghana Limited, who briefed the gathering on the purpose of the meeting, observed that a lot of companies and investors had gone through very trying times as a result of their inability to network and understand the Ghanaian business climate and operations of the security and regulatory bodies.

The conference, he said, would, therefore, provide the right opportunity for investors, businesses, and regulatory bodies to brainstorm to clearly understand the challenges and opportunities open to them so that they can make informed decisions.

It is expected to attract investors and manufacturers from Europe, the United Kingdom, United States of America and other parts of Africa.

Mr Ampah stressed the need for companies and event organizers to package information very well to attract sponsorship, while appealing to sponsors not to hesitate to respond early to requests for assistance.

He deplored the slow and late response by sponsors to requests from event organizers, saying such an attitude did not help in putting up good programmes.

His Excellency Mircea Boncu, Head of Mission of Romania, said his country was open to lots of areas of business cooperation such as oil and gas industry, road construction and transportation.

He said Romanian companies were eager to come and form joint ventures with Ghanaian companies in infrastructure and feeder road construction, adding that Romania now manufactures tractors of varied horsepower capacities from 60 to 100.

Mr Boncu also touched on other areas of possible trade collaboration or investment including vegetables, food crops, poultry, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.

He urged Ghanaians wishing to enter into any venture to contact his mission.

Other issues that cropped up at the meeting were the need to properly understand the country's tax and insurance laws to prevent their businesses from collapsing.

Officials from the Value Added Tax Service, Registrar General's Department, Ghana Chamber of Commerce, Ghana Shippers Authority and the Ghana National Fire Service and other security agencies updated the meeting on their operations.

Some of the participants expressed the need to reduce the high cost of doing business, poor support system and proper housekeeping, and the provision of accurate information to investors.

Source: GNA

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