28.04.2005 Crime & Punishment

Govt asked to overhaul legal system to promote business

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Accra, April 28, GNA- Major Daniel Ablorh-Quarcoo (RTD), the Managing Director of Allied Cocoa Products, on Wednesday suggested the need for the country's legal system to be overhauled to facilitate business growth.

"Without this it will be difficult to create any incentives for entrepreneurship development, especially after the traumatic experiences of some of our entrepreneurs during military upheavals," he said. Maj Ablorh-Quarcoo was delivering an Alumni Lecture at the University of Ghana, Legon on the topic: "Encouraging Entrepreneurial Development: The Challenges and Prospects".

The Alumni lectures instituted 30 years ago enables past students of the university to keep in touch with the life and work of their Alma Mater.

Maj Ablorh-Quarcoo observed that some of the country's cultural values and attitude "could stifle the urge of individuals to break out and be adventurous enough to take the risk involved in innovation, creativity and enterprise formation".

He said generally Ghanaians were more of risk avoiders as compared to Nigerians for example.

"Our attitude in life, to a great extent, has an impact on our ability to nurture and promote entrepreneurial development," he said. Maj. Ablorh-Quarcoo said the negative influence of the country's cultural practices was the system of inheritance that required properties, including viable farms. "This is not an incentive to go out and acquire one's own property, neither is it an incentive to promote creativity and entrepreneurship". He tasked entrepreneurs to acquire sufficient education and skill to become successful.

He also suggested the need for the success stories of entrepreneurs to be documented as case studies for students. "In as much the same way the failed enterprise stories also need to be told. This should provide the impetus to stimulate those with the latent abilities to strive to be successful."

Maj. Ablorh-Quarcoo said it was essential to introduce new products for Ghanaian consumers to generate wealth, improve on the economy and raise the standard of living.

"The people to do these are the entrepreneurs- the people who make economic change happen- we need to grow them". Maj. Ablorh-Quarcoo listed business registration, land acquisition, financial constraint and bureaucracy as some of the challenges facing Ghanaian entrepreneurs.

He said one very serious challenge confronting local entrepreneurs was conflict resolution, either within the firm, between firms or with the state.

"If matters can be quietly resolved by our courts when they have been properly equipped, it will greatly affect the attitude of business".

He expressed the need for entrepreneurial and technical skills to be made part of the curricula for the universities, polytechnics, other tertiary institutions and vocational schools to promote entrepreneurship in the country.

Maj. Ablorh-Quarcoo also advocated the creation of venture capital and market information to boost entrepreneurial growth. Prof. Kwadwo Asenso-Okyere, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Ghana, said the university had instituted entrepreneurial component in all courses of studies for undergraduates, adding, "This would go a long way to promote entrepreneurship". 28 April 05

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