In collaboration with the U.S. Embassy in Ghana, AmCham Ghana, on Thursday, July 7, 2022, hosted the Minnesota-Ghana Business Roundtable and a business reception in honor of the visiting trade delegation from the US state of Minnesota.
The trade delegation was led by Minnesota Africans United, with support from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. The delegates included business leaders from various sectors such as agribusiness, healthcare, ICT, and renewable energy. They were in the country to explore possible partnerships to bolster trade and investment between the state of Minnesota and Ghana.
Speaking at the business roundtable, the CEO of Ghana Free Zones Authority, Dr. Mike Oquaye Jnr. stated that the free zones authority is diversifying with more focus on companies with foreign markets by providing incentives to drive production. “The Ghana Free Zones Authority used to concentrate mainly on exemptions for export, but now we are looking at a different future, and that future is giving incentives, monetary and non-monetary to companies that have foreign markets. So that is the exact kind of delegation that’s here.”
Dr. Mike Oquaye Jnr. reiterated the authority’s readiness to assist companies to establish their businesses in the country and encouraged the delegation to explore opportunities in the Agricultural sector as there are a lot of incentives that make for mutual benefits. He also noted the importance of US companies in the various industrial parks in the country. “Wherever we have had American companies as anchor tenants, we have been able to scale up in no time,” he added.
Yofi Grant, CEO of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre, said Ghana is in the middle of the world and provides a 360-degree view, putting the country in a perfect position as the logistics hub of the world. He also noted the relevance of adding value to raw materials hence the government’s focus on manufacturing through its ‘One District One Factory‘ initiative.
He noted that Ghana’s peace, stability, and constitution that prohibits expropriation serve as security and assurance to investors that their interests are protected.
Other speakers at the roundtable included Kofi Adams from the Ministry of Trade and Industry, AmCham Ghana Executive Secretary, Simon Madjie, President and CEO of Minnesota Africans United, Basil Ajuo, Assistant Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, Patrice Bailey, and Laurie Kelleher, Commercial Officer, at the U.S. Embassy Ghana.
The Chamber also hosted the visiting delegates for a business reception to allow Chamber members to network and establish possible business relations.
The delegation from Minnesota included Ben Dossman from Bija Bonanicals, Micheal Birchard, VP for Diversity and Inclusion at the Mitchell Hamline School of Law, Alexandra Spieldoch, CEO of Bountifeild Harvest, Samuel Ngwa, President and CEO of Dessco and Safari Pride, Brian Plourde, Founder of Lema Power, Richard Ayuk from Lema Power, Martin Akinseye from Concept Media, and Isaac Owens.