Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has stated that government would do all it can to support mining companies operating responsibly as a means of stimulating the country’s economic growth.
He expressed his optimism at the positive outcome of the various fiscal policies being implemented under the new regime to relieve businesses of the fiscal burdens in their operations.
Dr Bawumia was addressing a delegation of the Ghana Chamber of Mines who paid a courtesy call on him at the Flagstaff House in Accra.
The delegation, led by Mr Kwame Addo-Kufuor, the President of the Chamber, Mr Eric Asubonteng, the 1st Vice President, and Mr Sulemanu Koney, the Chief Executive Officer, sought to introduce the leadership to the Vice President and to assure him of the Chamber’s unflinching support.
Welcoming the delegation, Dr Bawumia re-echoed the Government’s quest to support the mining industry, a major partner in the economic development of the country.
He said the Government was inviting business partners into various sectors to create an interrelated economy that could rely on internally generated revenue for key developmental projects.
Dr Bawumia said the NPP Administration was keen on ensuring that the local content drive in the industrial sectors were strengthened and made more beneficial to local entrepreneurs and businesses, adding there would be “the creation of linkages among the industries in the country to bolster value for Ghanaians.”
He said there was, therefore, a need to develop a mutually beneficial relationship between the Chamber and the Government to ensure that the process became a reality.
On the issue of illegal mining, Dr Bawumia expounded government’s commitment to developing the Multilateral Mining Integrated Project (MMIP), which is a holistic approach towards tackling the illicit activity.
He said the Government already saw the Chamber as a key stakeholder of the MMIP.
Mr Addo-Kufuor, on his part, said it was the Chamber’s expectation that all of the relevant ministries would demonstrate the same resolve by the Vice President to partner with the Chamber to propel the local content agenda and find a lasting solution to illegal mining.
Mr Sulemanu Koney, the CEO, explained how the VAT on exploration inputs had contributed to the unattractiveness of Ghana as the foremost mining destination in the Sub-region.
He said in recent times, most investors had turned their attention to neighbouring West African countries due to the fiscal reliefs presented to businesses in the mining sector and urged the Vice President to take a look at such progressive business enabling policies.
The Vice President assured the delegation that the issue of the country’s unattractiveness will be captured holistically in the 2018 budget and promised to continue to work with key agencies to improve Ghana’s image as the preferred mining and business destination on the continent.
Source: B&FT Online