China would play a lead role in support of Ghana’s effort to overcome current economic difficulties, the Chinese Ambassador, Sun Baohong has said.
Speaking to Ghana News Agency in an interview, Ms Sun said China would continue to offer assistance in the areas of investment, infrastructure and manufacturing, especially through the Public Private Partnership mode.
“We will cooperate with Ghana in the light of current economic conditions and work with government on its current strategies to deal with the difficulties,” the Ambassador said.
Lauding the long-standing economic and trade ties between the two countries, Ms Sun said Ghana is a very important partner in Africa.
“You know the economic and trade relations between Ghana and China is ranked in the frontline among African countries,” she said.
Ghana-China cooperation on economy and trade has increased significantly with the bilateral trading volume registering $5.43 billion, as at the end of 2012.
The Ambassador said an interesting feature of the current relationship is that Chinese exports to Ghana have been sliding downwards while Ghanaian exports are growing by good margin.
“It is a new development that we are happy with,” the ambassador said, adding many factors contributed to the increasing trend of Ghanaian exports to the Chinese market.
She cited efforts of relevant Ghanaian and Chinese authorities’ for the drive of exports to China.
Citing Ghana’s recent participation in the Xiamen Fair, Ms Sun said the Chinese government supported by cutting the cost of exhibition by 50 per cent.
In addition, the Chinese provided interpretation services to the exhibitors to facilitate the transactions and also attended speedily to visas of fair participants.
“I think Ghana Export Promotion Authority worked hard to ensure that Chinese customers get to know and have more knowledge about Ghanaian products within the government strategy of exporting to diversified markets, including China,” she said.
She said although there has been great increase of Ghanaian exports into China, the products are still primary and called on Ghana to develop her manufacturing capacity to produce commercially competitive goods.
In this direction, she said, investment is paramount to increase capacity and to produce Made-in-Ghana products.
She said China and Ghana could in future cooperate more not only on the bilateral side but also on the political, regional and international front as well as open more mechanism of dialogue.
“We both are developing countries. We need to emphasise our common values as developing countries to ensure that the two countries enjoy a fair international system. It will also create enviable conditions for developing countries to follow,” she said.
She called on the media to help promote people’s understanding while strengthening the need for dialogue and conversation in everything with authorities to build strong political trust.
“Also the media should play very constructive role in providing very true and objective information to the people because the people have the right to true information. I think that it is important the people listen to all sides of the issue,” she added.
A Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry Ibrahim Murtala Mohammed said Ghana could use her partnership with China to boost exports, technology and skills transfer to the small and medium scale industry.
He said the two countries could use the long-standing relationship to enhance trade and development for the mutual benefit of the two countries.
Mrs Agnes Gifty Adjei-Sam, Deputy Director, Trade Research and Information, said Ghana’s participation in the fairs in China had offered entrepreneurs the opportunity to identify and establish contacts with potential investors for future partnership.
Mrs Adjei-Sam said the exhibitors had also used the opportunity to acquire new technology and learn of new ways to package their products.
She said the Yiwu and Xiamen fairs had exposed Ghana to potential Chinese investors while some big investors expressed interest to set up plants in Ghana.
Mrs Francesca Opoku, Chief Executive Officer of Solution Oasis, said there are enormous opportunities in the Chinese market and that she used her participation in the fairs to get equipment to add value to her products.
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