Ghana to review $1m capital for Nigerian traders

Ghana to review $1m capital for Nigerian traders

The President of Ghana, Prof Nana Akufo-Addo, has assured Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, of the readiness of the Ghanaian

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The President of Ghana, Prof Nana Akufo-Addo, has assured Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, of the readiness of the Ghanaian Government to consider the resolutions reached at the meeting between Nigerian and Ghanaian lawmakers at the Ghanaian Parliament House.

Part of the resolutions is the amendment of a Ghanaian law that makes it compulsory for foreigners (including Nigerian traders) to have $1m as capital base to operate businesses in the West African country.

Akufo-Addo gave the assurance when the Speaker of Ghanaian Parliament, Mike Oquaye, led his Nigerian counterpart on a courtesy visit to his office at the Jubilee House, Accra, Ghana on Thursday. This was contained in a statement issued on Friday by the Chairman of the House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Benjamin Kalu.

The statement was titled, ‘Ghana to Consider Resolutions From Legislative Diplomacy in Resolving Trade Dispute – Ghana’s President Akufo-Addo tells Gbajabiamila…as Nigeria’s Speaker Makes Case for the Amendment of Ghana’s GIPC Act.’

Gbajabiamila had led a delegation of members of the House on a two-day “legislative diplomatic mission” to Ghana, to explore legislative diplomacy towards resolving the issues affecting both countries. The dialogue between the parliaments of the two countries had sought modalities to resolve challenges and provide an enabling business environment for foreign traders, especially Nigerians doing business in Ghana.

Several foreign businesses in Ghana, many of which are owned by Nigerians, have been facing challenges in the demand for $1m capital base, as enshrined in the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre Act (2013).

Responding to a request by Gbajabiamila for a review of the GIPC Act to make certain concessions, Akufo-Addo said the request was in order as it “makes a lot of sense.” The Ghanaian President, who expressed satisfaction with Gbajabiamila’s visit, endorsed his proposal for the establishment of a ‘Nigeria-Ghana Business Council’ established by law in both countries.

Akufo-Addo further suggested the setting up of a joint ministerial committee between the two countries that would “shepherd” issues between Ghana and Nigeria. He also told Gbajabiamila that he would raise the issue with President Muhammadu Buhari, when they meet at the ECOWAS Summit on Monday.

Kalu quoted the Ghanaian President as saying, “I think the way forward, which is really what matters in situations like this, that is being suggested, one that I find very acceptable, the idea of legislation, a Nigeria-Ghana Business Council that will superintendent trade matters and investment matters between our two countries, maybe long overdue.

Gbajabiamila had earlier said, “We have appealed to the (Ghanaian) Parliament that if it is possible at all to look again at the issues, as far as the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre Act is concerned, they should please do so. If it is not possible, then let us look at ways the pain can be reduced, like those expectations required in the law. We have proffered a few suggestions one of which is the establishment of Ghana-Nigeria Business Council backed by legislation on both sides.”