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05.10.2004 Business & Finance

Germany cancels Ghana's debts

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Accra, Oct. 5, GNA - Germany has cancelled all Ghana's debts out of commercial claims and all debt resulting from disbursed Financial Cooperation.

This follows the decision of the Paris Club after Ghana reached the Completion Point in the implementation of the Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) Initiative.

"With this decision, there is no outstanding debt between our two countries," the German Ambassador in Ghana, Dr Peter Linder said in Accra on Monday on the 14th Anniversary of the Unification of Germany. He said Ghana's firm economic and budget policy enabled Germany among nine donor countries for the first time to subscribe to Multi-Donor Budget Support for Ghana in 2004.

Dr Linder said the Private Sector Development Strategy launched by the Ghana Government in 2004 would strengthen the national economy to create better conditions for investment and would be supported by a German Development Cooperation Programme.

He said Germany appreciated Ghana's efforts to improve conditions for Ghanaian-German economic cooperation, noting; "the signing of the Ghanaian-German Agreement on the Avoidance of Double Taxation in August 2004 added another essential prerequisite for the enhancement of private sector activity and business relations between our two countries.

"The completion of the "One Stop Shop" planned by the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) where foreign investors could undergo all formalities and take all required steps to open a business in Ghana would undoubtedly attract more investors from Germany.

"The interest of German enterprises in investing in Ghana or starting a business with Ghanaian partners was proved by the visit of a high-level business delegation accompanying (German) Chancellor Gerhard Schr=F6der to Ghana in January 2004."

Dr Linder said the highlight of Ghanaian-German relations this year was the visit of Chancellor Gerhard Schr=F6der in Ghana in January 2004 - a return visit to President John Agyekum Kufuor's in 2002 to Germany.

The Ambassador said Ghana had proved her outstanding role in the commitment for African reforms and integration by electing to undergo the New Partnership for Africa's Development's (NEPAD's) African Peer Review Mechanism as the first country.

Dr Linder said Germany appreciated Ghana's bi-and multilateral efforts to reach a peaceful settlement of the prevailing conflicts in the West Africa Sub Region.

He said his government was supporting the role of Ghana under the leadership President John Agyekum Kufuor as the current Chairman of the Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS).

"Germany is ready to support ECOWAS-activities designed to strengthen its role as a regional conflict mediator and to build up its own peacekeeping forces and capabilities."

On sports, Dr Linder said Germany actively supported Ghanaian soccer teams with equipment donations and had invited two soccer trainers for training in the Soccer College of German Soccer Association. "And of course we are looking forward to welcome Ghana's National Soccer Team at the World Championship in 'Germany 2006'."

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