The six year facility between the government of Ghana and the China Development Bank has been identified as a source of opportunity for local businesses. The $3 billion facility is intended to finance transportation infrastructure development projects, including land, rail, water and port management, value addition to oil and gas as well as irrigation for agriculture.
Speaking at the launch of the ‘Africa Means Business’ initiative in Accra, Seth Terkper, Deputy Finance Minister encouraged local businesses to take advantage of the facility. Mr Terkper said the second phase of the US$3 billion master facility agreement, which has 12 subsidiary agreements, will be private sector oriented with a financing opportunity which Ghanaian businesses could access to enhance their operations.
Among the 12 eligible projects identified for financing under the facility is a US$ 100 million SME Projects Incubation Facility.
Mr Terpker said Ghanaian businesses could access the loan to “establish small scale industries to substitute for imports so that we can all ease the pressures that we have on the Cedi today”.
George Ofori, President of the Ghana Union of Trade Association, also hopes that the facility could be beneficial in the expansion drive of private enterprises, whilst aiding start-ups with challenges in accessing capital.
He however asked the government to improve its information dissemination and communication of availability of financial packages to target groups through the various ministries, departments and agencies. He added that there was the need for the modalities for accessing support from the CDB facility to be properly spelt out to enable interested businesses to adequately prepare.
“If you have an idea or you have a facility and you don’t get to the target group who are supposed to access the facility, they may not be able to take advantage of it. That is why you sometimes hear of facilities that are returned to donors because they were not accessed by the groups for whom it was intended,” Mr. Ofori Observed.