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Industrialists urged to spearhead accelerated economic growth

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Tema, Dec. 22, GNA - Mr Joseph Henry Mensah, Senior Minister, on Wednesday called on Ghanaian industrialists to take advantage of the enabling environment in the economy to produce standardized products that could be marketable to accelerate the country's economy. He said Ghana had set the path to meet economic goals before 2015 and since industrialists were the bedrock of the economy the onus rest on them to take up the challenge to help achieve the target. Mr Mensah was optimistic that Ghana could achieve the target before 2015 because "we have been relieved of our debts."

The Senior Minister who is also the Chairman of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) was addressing industrialists in Tema at a dinner organized by NDPC to brief them on the Growth and Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS 11) document from 2006 to 2009. He said the prevailing economic stability required changes in perception, attitude towards productivity and exhibition of good industrial relationship, unity, faith and confidence based on commitment to tackle their business.

For Ghana to achieve a middle-income level; the Senior Minister stressed the need for entrepreneurs to cultivate the spirit of nationalism and come up with quality products to enable the people have money in their pockets.

Mr Mensah asked industrialists and entrepreneurs to cooperate with the Government because "Government is not going to establish factories, we are leaving that for you, so accept the opportunity to venture into it, in order to achieve the new vision."

He gave the assurance that the Government would not allow foreign investments alone to flourish in the country "unless we find local partners because Ghanaian economy must be run by Ghanaians." "In order that businessmen and entrepreneurs have access to money to run their businesses, the Government has completed an arrangement with the World Bank to release money to the banks since we need the banking sector to support productivity for economic growth to leave a legacy for the future," He added.

Mr Tony Oteng-Gyasi, Managing Director of Tropical Cable and Conductor who is also the President of Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) called for the enactment of the Domestic Preference Margin into law. The industrialists complained about low patronage of their products as a result of the influx of inferior goods on the local market while access to financial services was also a problem as well as there was no particular institution for them to channel their concerns.

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