The Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) has recorded new investments to the tune of $3 billion in the first quarter of the year.
This is far higher than the amount of newly registered projects recorded in the same period last year which stood at just $249.49 million.
The amount which puts the centre on track to exceed its target of more than $5 billion worth of new investments in various projects by the end of the year emanated from 49 new projects and it is expected to create 2,551 jobs.
The Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) component of the estimated value of the registered projects amounted to $2.95 billion as against $157.57 million in the first quarter of 2016.
Speaking in an interview with the Graphic Business in Philadelphia on June 20, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of GIPC, Mr Yofi Grant, who had earlier addressed a large gathering of American and Ghanaian investors at the US/Ghana Chamber of Commerce seminar, also noted that of the 49 projects registered during the first quarter, 43, representing 87.76 per cent were wholly-foreign owned enterprises valued at $539.56 million which is 17.75 per cent of the total estimated value of the projects registered.
The remaining six per cent (12.24 per cent) were joint ventures between Ghanaians and foreign partners valued at $2,500.56 million which is 82.25 per cent of the total estimated value of total projects registered.
The manufacturing sector incidentally recorded 13 newly registered projects at an estimated value of $2.5 billion followed by services with 12 projects at $10.62 million, while general trading recorded 10 projects at $15.87 million.
Building and construction recorded five projects at $6.40 million with agriculture recording only one project at $6.91 million while tourism had nothing.
Mr Grant said “the value of newly registered projects recorded in the period under review is a good sign that we will meet and possibly exceed the target set for the year. We need to push harder and we are doing so with our travels across the world to sell our country and its potential.”
He said the government was expecting an investment in railway and “that will be in the region of $3 billion; bauxite will also bring another $3.5 billion and then iron and ore and steel is also another $5 billion to $8 billion, so the future is exciting.”
He said the potential in the country and the nature of private businesses in the country required them to push a bit harder to attract partners to expand their businesses.
“Our private businesses should be a bit more aggressive in the quest to attract investors to partner them with their businesses because other business people from other countries are selling same to them,” he said.
Mr Grant said the GIPC would continue to bring them along on every investment trip to create the platform for them to engage better and more directly.
On his observations and expectations from the week-long investment tour to the United States of America (USA) which took him to Washington D.C. and Philadelphia, Mr Grant said, “it was successful and promising and I know the depth of engagement will yield positive results.”
“It was great bringing the business people here to the states to meet with potential investors and I liked the various engagements and the seriousness that was attached to the various meetings”, he added.
Mr Grant said the level of goodwill in Ghana and the government in particular was high and gave the assurance that all efforts would be made to leverage the opportunity to ensure that the country attracted the needed investment to turn its economy around.
“We can’t and won’t fail our people. We will continue on the positive trajectory we have started and will increase the tempo as we settle fully into office and do what the people expect from us.”