Kenya has been a go-to country for most Ghanaians over the years,
mainly due to its tourist attractions and its growing economy. In January 2020, it inaugurated its High Commission in Accra, Ghana, which is set to facilitate trade and investment between both countries. In view of that, the High Commissioner of Kenya to Ghana, H.E. Eliphas Barine, paid a courtesy call on the National Executives of the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Monday, November16, 2020, to officially introduce himself to them and to discuss the possibility of a collaboration with the GNCCI to enable Ghana’s private sector do effective business with Kenya.
Mr. Mark Badu-Aboagye, the Chief Executive Officer of the GNCCI, on behalf of the National Executives, represented by Mr. Clement Osei-Amoako (President) and Dr. Mrs. Emelia Assiakwa (National Treasurer), expressed their appreciation for the High Commissioner’s visit to formally introduce himself to the National Executives. He was especially grateful that the discourse would be in the interest of the private sector and would boost the economic and social relationship between Ghana and Kenya.
In response, the High Commissioner thanked the Chamber for the opportunity to meet with the National Executives and called for a partnership between the GNCCI and Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KNCCI) to promote trade and investment between Ghana and Kenya. Owing to the fact that both countries are well endowed with resources, he is convinced that with a little value addition to these resources, trade would boost exponentially between the two countries.
It is indisputable that there are ongoing discussions to implement the AfCFTA agreement to liberalize trade on the African continent. On account of this, he encouraged both countries to take advantage of the agreement as it would see to the removal of all trade barriers, thereby enhancing trade and investment between the two countries.
The High Commissioner went on to assure Ghanaian businesses and investors of the secure business environment in Kenya, through functional systems employed by the Kenyan government, to ensure an unimpeded running of business in Kenya.
In his remarks, the President of the GNCCI indicated that the relationship between Ghana and Kenya went a long way back, as far as the days of Kwame Nkrumah and Jomo Kenyatta, thus, doing business together was very important to cement the relationship. However, for years, trade between both countries has been on the low side. From 2017 to 2018, exports from Ghana to Kenya declined from US$807,000 to US$301,000, as such, he implored both countries to look at areas that would give each country a comparative advantage, and hence, make trade more efficient and effective.
The President further suggested to both countries to take steps to ensure the smooth connectivity of goods and services either by road, railway or by sea.
To formalize the partnership between the GNCCI and the KNCCI, the C.E.O of the GNCCI proposed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding by both parties and beseeched the High Commissioner to facilitate the formalization of the partnership between the two Chambers.
In conclusion, the President thanked the High Commissioner for the courtesy visit, assured him of the readiness of Ghana’s private sector to engage in trade with Kenya, and pledged to provide assistance to the High Commission when called upon.