By Godwill Arthur-Mensah, GNA
Accra, Aug.07, GNA — Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, on Monday, said the Government has established the framework of ensuring that 70 per cent of tax-payer funded contracts are awarded to local contractors or businesses towards achieving a Ghanaian owned-economy.
“The Government would build a vibrant economy beyond aid, which is business-friendly and grounded in Ghanaian ownership,” he emphasised.
Vice President Bawumia said this in a recorded video, played at the opening ceremony of the Sixth Edition of the Ghana Economic Forum, at the Kempinski Gold Coast City Hotel in Accra.
The two-day event is on the theme: “Building a Ghanaian Owned Economy, 60 Years after Independence”. It has brought together more than 500 captains of industries and entrepreneurs to brainstorm on the country’s economic challenges and chart the way forward.
The conference is organised by the Business and Financial Times newspaper, with Barclays Bank being the lead sponsor.
Other partners include the Ghana News Agency, EIB Media Group, City FM, Zenith Bank, GCB, ADB and UMB.
The discussions that highlight investments in Ghana generally and how Ghanaian businesses could utilise them to their advantage, especially in the Energy sector, the Economy, Agriculture and the Insurance sector.
The Vice President stated that the Government would build an economy that provided a conducive atmosphere for investment, thus ensure a stable macroeconomic environment.
He explained: “Therefore, we’re moving very quickly in that direction by bringing down the fiscal deficit from 9.3 per cent to 6.3 per cent to GDP by the end of the year; and hope to go below to between three and five per cent in 2018,” he said.
“Therefore, bringing down the interest rate was key in the plan of Government so that businesses could have access to affordable credit.
“We are moving quickly to formalise the economy along three pillars- a national identification system, digital addressing system and having interoperability of the payment system so that we have financial inclusion.”
Vice President Bawumia noted that these measures would ensure accurate and rich source of data for the various government institutions and private sector to transact business.
He said: “We also want an economy that doesn’t burden the people with taxes and, therefore, we have moved quickly to reduce the tax burden to encourage investment and increase production”.
The Vice President is in Iran on official business.
Mrs Patience Akyianu, the Managing Director of Barclays Bank, Ghana, the lead sponsor for the forum, said the Bank had operated in Ghana for 100 years with banking excellence and supported many businesses and individuals achieve their ambitions.
She said its support had transformed lives and aided the country’s growth agenda under successive governments.
Mrs Akyianu gave the assurance that the Bank would continue to support the business community, entrepreneurs and government to achieve sustainable progress.
To build a competitive economy, Mrs Akyianu said, the country must build an economy that rewarded entrepreneurship, supported production, and created jobs.
The participants include captains of industries and entrepreneurs across the country.