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Minister for Trade and Industry at the first meeting of the joint Ghana-European Union Economic Partnership Agreement which Held in Accra at Alisa Hotel.

Hon. Carlos Ahenekrah who is the deputy Minister of Trade and Industry red the speech on behalf of Hon.Alan Kyeremateng who is the current Minister for Trade and industry and he said,"It is a great honour for me to be part of this historic event,which seeks to set us on the right path for effective and smooth implementation of the stepping-stone Agreement (IEPA),which was ratified by the Parliaments of Ghana, and the European community and its members in August and December 2016 respective. I wish on behalf of the Government and people of Ghana to officially welcome you to this meeting and wish everyone a prosperous new year with God's  blessings."

According to him,"The importance of trade to the growth and development of any nation is unquestionable because trade, indeed,has the potential of guaranteeing economic growth and lifting millions of people out of poverty. Without any shred of doubt, U strongly believe then the benefits of this partnership agreement to businesses, consumers and other stakeholders in Ghana and the Eu are enormous and worthwhile,he said."
He stated that, incredibly, the EU is by far the leading destination of Ghana's export consignment for traditional and non- traditional products such as cocoa,fruits, vegetables and processed fish. The EU
 Is also the largest provider of development assistance (over USD$500Million in 2016),and the biggest source of foreign direct investment (more than USF$6 Billion in the past two decades)."

The interim EPA (IEPA)between Ghana of the one part,and the European community and its members states of the other part, seeks to reinforce and secure a more competitive trading relationship between the parties. It provides for the establishment of a joint EPA to serve as the main channel for dialogue on trade, in accordance with Article 73 of the treaty. Further, it obliges the contracting parties to determine and approve the rules of procedure and modus operandi of the joint EPA Committee,he said. "

Hon. Carlos explained that,"The Government of Ghana is gratified with the promise from the European Union to support identification of capacity need and also establishment of a secretariat within EPA Government at the ministry of trade and Industry, for effective implementation of the strategy and monitoring of the IEPA. We are convinced that this laudable targeted EPA project complement efforts of the Ministry to mainstream the IEPA into the coordinated policies, programmes and projects of government development agenda for shared growth, prosperity and equality of opportunity for all Ghanaians."

Source: Kofi Dwumah |

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