With the processes aimed at operationalizing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) that started this year, it has become necessary for the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) and key partners to slow down the process of revising the GIPC law.
The completion of the review had been scheduled for this year, but it will have to now wait for the completion of AfCFTA’s multilateral investment framework, which falls under phase two of the treaty, scheduled to be agreed upon by December.
Only then can Ghana complete its own investment code review, incorporating the relevant aspects of the pan continental one.
Indeed the GIPC has had to engage stakeholders on different levels, including multilateral trade and investment regulatory and facilitation institutions and experts to fully understand how the new pan African trade and investment regime is going to impact on Ghana’s regulatory framework especially considering the country’s position as the headquarters of AfCFTA, which requires it to set a good example for other member states of the impending single market.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of GIPC, Yofi Grant revealed this to the Goldstreet Business in Accra during the Annual Economic Counsellors’ Dialogue held yesterday.
He noted that since it is now clear that the AfCFTA will soon become operational – including a multilateral investment framework as well as the more widely publicized free trade component- it is imperative to ensure that while Ghana’s own investment objectives are not compromised, they are however in consonance with the multilateral investment framework that will be provided under AfCFTA.
“We recognize that every country tries as much as possible to be attractive to investors, but we must do so in consonance with pan continental protocols that we are now signing up to”, he insisted.
The revision of the GIPC law, Act 865, 2013 became necessary due to the changing trends in the business environment and ecosystem and the need to institute key new strategies to attract Foreign Direct Investment.
Meanwhile, GIPC in collaboration with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the European Union (EU) are collaborating in an effort aimed at creating an environment to regionalize investments and institute policy framework for investment in the West African sub-region.
The programme dubbed: West African Competitiveness Project focuses at strengthening the competitiveness of West African countries and enhancing their integration into the regional and international trading system to attract more FDI.
At the International Trade Centre (ITC) level, the GIPC has been a partner in promulgating an investment framework that is standardized and supported by all members of World Trade Organisation (WTO).
Speaking with the Goldstreet Business during the Annual Economic Counsellors’ Dialogue, Mr. Yofi Frant said over the past few years, global FDI has shrunk and with the advent of the novel corona virus that has disrupted various business and social gatherings, it is expected to shrink further, hence the need to institute a revised policy framework aimed at sustaining FDI inflows.
“Whiles I have reservations of it being binding, its still important to have a good framework that enables global investment”, he added.