AGI equipping members for opportunities under AfCFTA agreement

Mr Dela Gadzanku, the Volta, Eastern and Oti Regional Chairman of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), says members of the association in the region are receiving capacity enhancements to take advantage of opportunities under the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement.

He said the trainings would help them make informed business decisions to take advantage of the full potential of the agreement for the economic transformation of Ghana and Africa.

Mr Gadzanku, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, said the AGI had built the capacity of its members in business advisory support, standardisation and certification of products.

He said an e-platform had also been established for members to sell their products, among others.

Mr Gadzanku said for the members to compete favourably with others around the continent, they needed to produce and provide services that were standard.

On the impact of COVID-19, he commended government for the stimulus packages given to local businesses and said they kept businesses ‘above water.’

Mr Gadzanku said the global effects of the pandemic were felt by millions of people and had stretched every fibre of the local economy.

He said it weakened the ability of many companies to cater for their employees.

He said sectors like tourism and agriculture suffered greatly, with the hospitality industry recording low international tourist visit due to the closure of the airports and farmers unable to transport their produce to market centres.

Mr Gadzanku said hope came when some businesses in the garment industry were engaged to produce personal protective equipment for local use.

“This in itself provided employment for those in that sector,” he said.

On harmonisation of operations, he called on Ghana Standard Authority and the Food and Drugs Authority to harmonise their operations and activities to make it easier for businesses to go through their processes.

Mr Gadzanku asked the institutions to decentralise their services to serve businesses in the districts.

Mr Gadzanku urged the government to continue to create conducive business environment for businesses, with low interest rates on borrowing to enable the private sector contribute to the development of the economy.

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