Apex Shipping CEO urges Gov’t to build strong ecosystems for supply chain growth amidst AfCFTA

In a compelling call to action, Prince Arkutu, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Apex Shipping and Commercial Company, has urged the Government to spearhead the creation of strong and supportive ecosystems that will catalyze supply chain development within the country and extend its impact to the wider African continent.

Emphasizing the unprecedented opportunities presented by the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), Arkutu delivered a thought-provoking keynote address during the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre’s (GIPC) highly anticipated second-quarter CEOs Breakfast Meeting held on Tuesday, May 30, 2023.

With a discerning eye towards the future, Arkutu stressed that in order to fully unlock Ghana’s immense supply chain potential, it is imperative for the government to establish comprehensive ecosystems that empower businesses to effectively capitalize on the benefits offered by the AfCFTA.

These ecosystems should encompass critical components such as robust infrastructure, well-connected road networks, cutting-edge technology solutions, and enhanced access to finance, among other pivotal enablers.

Arkutu highlighted the symbiotic relationship between robust ecosystems and foreign investment, affirming that the establishment of a strong and supportive ecosystem would instill the necessary confidence in foreign investors to make substantial commitments to the Ghanaian market.

Recognizing the pivotal role that foreign investment plays in driving economic growth, he underscored the need for Ghana to position itself as an attractive investment destination, effectively leveraging the opportunities presented by the AfCFTA to forge enduring partnerships with international stakeholders.

The CEO Breakfast Meeting, a prestigious gathering of influential industry leaders, provided an ideal platform for in-depth discussions on the pivotal role of logistics in fueling supply chain growth within Ghana and the sub-region, considering the exponential growth in trade expected among African countries under the AfCFTA. As Arkutu eloquently articulated, the success of the AfCFTA hinges on the ability of participating nations to cultivate robust ecosystems that foster seamless trade and logistical operations.

Indeed, the ambitious AfCFTA, which came into effect in January 2021, holds great promise for Africa’s economic transformation by promoting intra-African trade and harmonizing regulations across the continent. With Ghana positioned as the host country for the AfCFTA Secretariat, the nation has a unique opportunity to position itself as a regional logistics hub, facilitating the movement of goods and services and stimulating economic activity on an unprecedented scale.

Recognizing the immense potential, Arkutu’s passionate plea for the establishment of supportive ecosystems underscores the urgency for the Government to invest in critical infrastructure and prioritize technology-driven solutions that will enhance connectivity and efficiency within the supply chain. This not only serves as a catalyst for domestic trade and industrial growth but also bolsters Ghana’s role as a key player in the regional and global trade landscape.

By heeding Arkutu’s call and actively investing in the development of these ecosystems, Ghana stands poised to capitalize on the transformative opportunities afforded by the AfCFTA. The government’s commitment to nurturing an environment conducive to trade and investment will undoubtedly yield long-term dividends, positioning Ghana as a regional economic powerhouse and attracting global investors seeking to establish a foothold in Africa’s vibrant and rapidly expanding markets.

As stakeholders across industries rally together to forge a path towards a prosperous future, the consensus remains clear—creating a resilient supply chain ecosystem is paramount to Ghana’s success within the AfCFTA framework. Through collaboration between the public and private sectors, the nation can seize the transformative potential of this historic trade agreement, leading the charge towards a more integrated and prosperous African continent.

Prince Arkutu’s compelling address at the CEO Breakfast Meeting has highlighted the critical importance of fostering strong ecosystems to unlock Ghana’s supply chain potential and capitalize on the unprecedented opportunities presented by the AfCFTA.

By constructing supportive ecosystems that encompass vital elements such as infrastructure, technology, finance, and logistics, Ghana can position itself as a regional logistics hub and attract foreign investment, paving the way for sustainable economic growth and prosperity in the years to come.