President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said his government’s committed to instituting measures to help develop the business environment to aid the growth of enterprises and attract more Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs).
According to this the President supporting the growth of enterprises is one of the surest ways to help promote intra-Africa trade.
The President said this when he formally opened the first leg of the 2019 African Caucus meeting of Governors of the World Bank and IMF in Accra.
IMF/World Bank Caucus Meeting
The Ministry of Finance and the Bank of Ghana are hosting African Caucus Meeting of the Governors of the World Bank Group (WBG) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Accra Ghana.
The meeting was held from July 31 to 2nd August 2019. The second leg of the meeting will take place at the venue of the Annual Meetings of the IMF and WBG.
The event was opened by Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and brought together about 350 delegates from Africa and the Bretton Woods Institutions.
The theme for the meeting this year is: ‘Africa Beyond Aid – Enhancing Institutional Capacity and Innovative Finance for Sustainable Growth’.
Justification for Ghana Beyond Aid
Speaking at the same event, the President noted that development around the world has shown that developing countries like Ghana can no longer depend on aid to develop.
“I have been advocating for a Ghana Beyond Aid because nobody needs to spell it out to us that the economic transformation we desire will not come through aid,” he said.
“The truth is that, even if there was no aid fatigue, most charitable governments in place in the so-called donor countries, there will never be enough aid to develop Ghana or Africa to the level we want,” the President added.
He was, therefore, of the view that “aid was never meant to be what would bring us to the status of a developed nation or continent.“
Enhancing intra-Africa trade and developing the continent’s resources
Speaking at the same event, the President also bemoaned the slow pace of economic development in Africa despite the fact that the region is endowed with resources.
“We continue to struggle while most of the resources are exported. Most of these resources are exported in their raw form. And even for that, Africa does not derive its fair share of the values of these resources. From poorly designed contracts to illicit financial flows, billions are siphoned out of Africa every year,” he noted.
The President also made a passionate appeal to the Governors and Finance Ministers at the meeting to explore ways to build institutions to safeguard Africa’s resources and check to illicit financial flows, noting that billions are siphoned out of Africa every year.
Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta fellow ministers from Africa
Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta who is chair of African Caucus and was the host of the conference charged his fellow ministers to work hard to ensure that strong economic growths lead to job creation.
“It is not enough to provide decent job opportunities to our burgeoning your population, [we must] incentivise them to stay here on the continent to contribute their talents rather than risking their lives on the perilous journey across the Sahara and Mediterranean to Europe,” he added.
What is the Africa Caucus?
Established in 1963 as the “African Group,” the African Caucus was set up with the objective of strengthening the voice of African Governors in the Bretton Woods Institutions on development issues of particular interest to Africa.
Membership to the Caucus is open to all African Countries who are members of the IMF and WBG.
Currently, all 54 countries on the African continent are members of the African Caucus.
The countries are represented by their respective Governors at these institutions, commonly referred to as the African Governors.
The Governors are usually Ministers of Finance and Economic Development and Central Banks Governors.
Views and concerns of African Governors are conveyed annually to the heads of the Bretton Woods Institutions through a Memorandum at the Annual Meetings of the two institutions.
The first such Memorandum dates back to September 11, 1964, during that year’s Annual Meetings in Tokyo, Japan.
The African Caucus meets twice yearly.
The first meeting is held in the host country of the Chairperson of the Caucus. The second meeting takes place at the venue of the Annual Meetings of the IMF and WBG.
The Office of the Executive Directors (EDs) for the host country serves as the secretariat for the Caucus.
Administrative support for the 2019 African Caucus meetings will, therefore, be provided by the Office of the ED representing Afghanistan, Algeria, Ghana, Iran, Morocco, Pakistan and Tunisia, headed by Mr Shahid Ashraf Tarar.