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GIPC receives "Gold Award"

The Ghana Investment Promotion Centre has received the Business Initiative Directions, World Quality Commitment Award (International Gold Star Category) at the World Quality Commitment Convention, in Paris, on the 21st of September, 2009.

The award which was received by Mr. George Aboagye, the CEO on behalf of the GIPC, is in recognition of quality and excellence in Customer Satisfaction, leadership and Innovation.

The GIPC was designated to receive this award on the basis of World Quality Commitment regulations and criteria of the QC100 Total Quality Management Model.

The companies selected, some listed in the Global Fortune 500, have all demonstrated excellence in leadership within each designated sector, increased market share, improved results, as well as sustainability.

The selection for the award was on the basis of information obtained through correspondence and Online Poll Surveying of over 9000 companies, conducted by Business Initiative Directions (BID) a leading Independent organisation in the area of Leadership and Customer satisfaction based in Madrid, Spain.

Incidentally, this is the second time a public institution from Ghana has won such an award .The Ghana Free Zones Board in March 2001, under the leadership of Mr. George Aboagye (current CEO of GIPC) won a similar award in recognition of quality and excellence in private sector development in Africa.

The 2009 award ceremony which was presided over by Jose F. Prieto, President and CEO of BID was in recognition of the corporate entities as symbols of commitment to spreading Quality Culture in leadership, technology and innovation which make them models for other companies of their sectors in the 53 countries they represented.

The GIPC was the only institution from Ghana, among agencies and large, medium, and small private sector companies from 53 countries in Europe, North and South America, Middle East, Africa, Asia and Oceania which were presented with Platinum, Gold and Silver awards at the World Quality Commitment Convention.

The event was held in the spectacular complex formed by the Concorde La Fayette Hotel and the Paris "Palais des Congress" Convention Hall, near the Arc de Triomphe and the Champs Elysees, on 21st September, 2009.

Receiving the award, Mr. George Aboagye, the CEO of GIPC, pledged to continue to uphold the overall quality guidelines of the convention as an example for the development of a business community in Ghana, committed to quality.

Investment Promotion Mission to South Africa

A 25-member business delegation from Ghana led by the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) will be embarking on an investment promotion mission to South Africa from 18th to 31st October 2009.

The mission is being organized by GIPC in collaboration with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), WESGRO (Western Province), Kwazulu Natal Trade and Investment and the Johannesburg Chamber of Commerce of South Africa.

The objective of the mission is to promote targeted investment opportunities available in Ghana to targeted potential investors in South Africa. The delegation will also be exploring business opportunities for Ghanaian entrepreneurs in South Africa and they will be touring the Western Cape, Kwazulu Natal and Gauteng Provinces.

Under the leadership of Mr. George Aboagye, the CEO of GIPC, the delegation will hold business seminars to discuss business opportunities, as well as investment regulations, processes and procedures. This will also provide an opportunity for dedicated one-on-one business meetings to further explore specific opportunities.

Other officials also undertaking the trip are the CEO of the Ghana Free Zones Board and high ranking officials of the Minerals Commission, Ministry of Food and Agriculture and Energy, Ghana National Petroleum Corporation and private business executives engaged in energy, mining, oil & gas, agriculture and agro-processing.

There are sixty-one (61) registered South African companies operating in Ghana. These include MTN, AngolGold Ashanti, Shoprite, Woolworth, Game, Group Five, Stanbic Bank, SABMiller, Engen and Multichoice just to mention a few. The companies are in general trading, building and construction, manufacturing, banking, tourism and other service areas. South Africa currently is the 15th major investor country by number of projects and the 17th by value of projects registered in Ghana.

Trade between the two countries is currently heavily skewed in favour of South Africa. Investors from Ghana have either found it challenging or have not yet explored ways of doing business in South Africa although much could be done in that direction for our mutual benefit.

This imbalance is what the delegation led by GIPC in collaboration with the investment agencies in South Africa seek to address.


Rising Investor Interest In Ghana

The Ghana Investment Promotion Centre sucessfully organised a four nation investment promotion mission during the month of September 2009.

The mission divided into various legs by the different countries visited was led by the Chief Executive Officer of the Centre, Mr. George Aboagye as part of efforts to revamp the investment intrest in Ghana.

The programmes which were held in China, Singapore, UK and USA allowed for GIPC to begin to tie into the Chief Executive's vision to develop GIPC as a proactive and catalytic Investment Promotion Agency (IPA) with the capacity to attract inward investment as well as expand domestic investment for the creation of jobs, upgrading of skills, enhancement of infrastructure and development of the economy.

In China, the Centre participated in the International Fair for Investment & Trade (CIFIT) in Xiamen. The Ghana delegation was made up of staff from the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre, Ghana Free Zones Board and the Ghana Chamber of Commerce and Industries. Response from the fair showed that China is eager to increase investment in the Ghanaian economy.

The International Enterprise Seminar in Singapore, held on 16th September 2009 was part of a series of seminars that was aimed at projecting Ghana's political stability and how it has facilitated economic growth over the last 5 years. Mr. George Aboagye in his presentation highlighted areas like oil and gas, infrastructure and tourism as hotspots for investment into Ghana.

During the UK leg of the mission, the GIPC participated in the Oil and Gas Exhibition in Aberdeen, and also addressed members of the Business Council for Africa (West and Southern) at the 'Doing Business in Ghana: Ghana's Investment Potential' forum held at the Ghana High Commission London.

The Centre was also a major participant at the Ghana Business and Investment Exhibition held in the Berne Grants Art Centre London and targeted at Ghanaians in UK.

A general overview of the above programme saw a great interest in mother Ghana by most Ghanaians living in the UK. Many, eager to return home to invest were encouraged by information on structures being provided and being put in place by the Centre to facilitate their investment. Mr. Aboagye was also able to address the concerns and questions raised by Ghanaians in UK during an interview with the diasporian radio station, Rainbow Radio.

The Centre attended the 2009 US-Africa Business Summit, USA, 29th September – 1st October 2009, which was noted by many attendants to be the first strong representation of Ghana at the summit over the years. Much interest had been previously generated by the Obama visit to Ghana but not much information thereafter thus the excitement in the Centre's involvement.

GIPC was able to use the opportunity in collaboration with the American Chamber of Commerce, Ghana, to exhibit, provide information and answer first hand questions by potential investors attending the programme.
The Chief Executive Mr. Aboagye along with Mr. Simon Madjie, a representitive of the American Chamber of Commerce also met with senior representitives of the US Chamber of Commerce in Washington to discuss opportunitiess, Ghana's open markets and future collaborations.

During a brief stopover in New York, Mr. Aboagye was invited to present on key investment opportunities during a luncheon organised by Bank of America Merrill and Fidelity Bank in honour of His Excellency John Evans Atta Mills.
As GIPC drives to increase foreign direct investment, it is also urging and supporting more Ghanaians at home and in the diaspora to invest in Ghana through fully owned Ghanaian enterprises, foreign affiliates, subsidiaries, associates, branches and joint ventures.


Ghana becoming attractive destination for oil investment

With uncertainty still surrounding the outcome of Nigeria's amnesty deal with militants, the country's low ranking in the doing business index, poor infrastructure and a controversial industry policy, oil majors are exploring other frontiers in search of stable and secure sources of crude oil.

The latest in such moves involves Exxon Mobil Corp which has agreed to buy a $4 billion stake in an oil field off the coast of Ghana, according to people involved in the deal, as the global energy giant seeks a foothold in a major new oil-producing region.

The situation in the Niger Delta has driven investment that would have ordinarily come to Nigeria to her neighbouring countries of Angola and now Ghana because of peaceful investment climate in those places.

There have been series of attacks and high level of insecurity which have led some of the projects that should have been completed years back to remain stalled.

The deal is Exxon's first major purchase in a decade and appears to highlight that the company believes oil prices will rise over the long term. Some energy analysts have asserted that weak demand for the fuel can't support even the current price of $70 a barrel. A spokesman for Exxon declined to comment. People briefed on the deal said that while the parties have reached a binding agreement, the deal hasn't yet been completed and is therefore subject to change. One outstanding issue is that the Ghanaian national oil company has the right to increase its stake, according to a person involved in the transaction.

The seller is Dallas-based Kosmos Energy, which was part of a group that made the 2007 offshore discovery that is estimated to hold 1.8 billion barrels of oil. Anadarko Petroleum Corp. and Tullow Oil plc also own separate stakes in the field, known as Jubilee.

Kosmos informed bidders for its 23.5 percent stake in the field that it had "entered into an exclusive binding agreement" with Exxon, according to a person who had seen the letter.

The news of the deal was cheered by investors. In London trading Tullow rose 8.4 percent to £12.09 ($19.28). In afternoon New York trading, Anadarko was up 6.1 percent to $65.41 and Exxon was up 1.5 percent to $68.58.

But reacting to the development, Diran Fawibe, chief executive officer of International Energy Service, said the issue of corporate governance is very important to foreign investors and considering what is currently happening in Nigeria it is not impossible that oil companies might look elsewhere. He said the recent visit of President Barrack Obama to Ghana was part the strategic move by the United States to ensure that there is continuous supply of oil to their country. "US wants to make strategic move into oil industry in Ghana"

Oil companies in Nigeria, he said, are nervous with the intent Petroleum Industry Bill which the government is bent on implementing. The PIB, he said, seeks to reverse some terms of the existing contracts that have been. It is putting some level of uncertainty in the comfort level of the oil companies. Another industry operator who spoke to BusinessDay but did not want to be quoted said that the way the Chinese companies are trying to get a foothold into the Nigerian oil industry makes the government uncharitable to the traditional players in country's oil and gas industry.

But the former president of the Nigerian Association Petroleum Exploration (NAPE), Kingsley Ojoh, said that there is no cause for alarm over the investments oil majors are making in the neighbouring countries as their reserves are still far lower than that of Nigeria.

According to him, the biggest discovery in Ghana which is Jubilee field is worth $1.5 billion to $2 billion, adding that every investor has the right to put his money where he thinks he would make the best returns.

The oil industry has become increasingly optimistic about the prospects for oil production off the upper West African coast. This summer, a separate consortium announced a discovery off Sierra Leone, leading analysts to speculate that the 1,100-kilometer stretch between the two finds could be dotted with buried sands containing precious light crude oil.

Exxon's entry amounts to a seal of approval. "If Exxon Mobil likes this stuff, then everyone knows it's good," says Neil McMahon, an energy analyst with Sanford C. Bernstein.

The acquisition is the largest deal for the famously conservative company in over a decade. In the late 1990s, Exxon Corp. and Mobil Corp. combined in an $81.2 billion merger, creating the world's largest shareholder-owned oil company.

Around the same time, Exxon bid aggressively for exploration licenses in several deepwater blocks off Angola, which was then an unproven oil region emerging from years of civil war. The deal proved prescient: Angola is now a major oil producer and in 2007 became a member of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).

Opening up its wallet to purchase oil assets signals a new strategic direction for Exxon. Over the last decade, the Texas behemoth has been reluctant to make any large purchases, even as its holdings of cash and repurchased stock ballooned. At midyear, it held $15.6 billion in cash, and the value of treasury shares it has bought back since 2001 were worth $173.6 billion. The Ghana purchase suggests that Exxon is moving to replenish its oil reserves by building its portfolio asset by asset, rather than by making a mega-deal. Indeed, analysts say that Exxon, with its $325 billion market capitalisation, may be too big already in the eyes of regulators to swallow another large oil company.

In addition to buying into the new West Africa oil province, Exxon is engaged in some high-profile, deepwater exploration activities off the coasts of the Philippines , Turkey , Madagascar and Greenland . It also recently backed a large oil-sands development in Canada and a gas export facility in Australia . While none of these regions is large enough to transform the company, put together they could help Exxon maintain its oil and natural gas production and reserves.

It is not clear which company would be the operator of Jubilee, which is expected to begin producing oil in 2010. Tullow has a 34.7 percent stake, larger than the share Exxon is acquiring from Kosmos. Anadarko also holds a large interest. The Ghanaian national oil company and two other companies hold small stakes.



GIPC records Gh¢263.43 million (US$ 188.16 million) worth of investment for the first quarter of 2011

The gains currently being enjoyed from the prudent macroeconomic policies of the government is reflected in the achievements of the Ghana investment Promotion Centre during the 1st quarter of 2010.

During the period under review, the Centre recorded a total estimated value of GH¢263.43million (US$188.16million) worth of investments, a significant increase of 942.46% compared to GH¢25.27 million (US$18.05 million) recorded for the first quarter of 2009. The total initial capital transfer for this period was GH¢20.81million (US$14.86million), an increase of 65.48% compared to the first quarter of 2009 value of GH¢12.57(US$8.98MILLION)

The FDI component of the estimated value of the projects recorded for the first quarter was GH¢225.88 million (US$161.34 million), representing 85.75% of the total estimated value and a significant increase of 876.04% compared to GH¢23.14 million (US$16.53 million) recorded for the first quarter of 2009. The local currency component also amounted to GH¢37.34 million (US$26.82 million), representing 14.25% of the total estimated value.

A total of 108 new projects were recorded for this quarter, an increase of 208.57% compared to the 35 registered projects in the 1st quarter of 2009. This is expected to create 6,122 new jobs. This is an increase of 66.90% over the 3,668 expected jobs recorded for the first quarter in 2009.

The Centre in February launched the 2010 Ghana Club 100 awards, which is an annual event to honour the top 100 companies in corporate excellence. Under the theme “Enhancing partnerships between domestic and foreign investments for economic growth” Awards will be given in the ten strategic sectors, which are in line with government’s development agenda i.e. Agriculture and Agribusiness, Financial Services, Information and Communication Technology, Services, Infrastructure, Petroleum and Mining Services, Manufacturing, Tourism, Health and Education. 

The “Invest in Ghana” seminar which is being organised in collaboration with the Swiss Agency for Investment (OSEC), which was also launched on the same day is to promote partnerships between local and foreign investors. The first phase involved the identification and profiling of projects in Ghana. The second phase involved the Centre promoting the profiled projects in Switzerland. The next phase is the “Invest In Ghana” seminar which is to provide a platform for the profiled companies to hold one-on-one meetings with the foreign investors.

The Centre has decided that the Ghana Club 100 event and the “Invest In Ghana” seminar which is in partnership with OSEC be moved to the 3rd quarter of 2010. This is to enable more companies to participate in both events. 

In response to reports from certain sections of the Ghanaian business community, particularly the Ghana Union of Traders (GUTA) that some foreign investors/traders operating in the country are flouting the country’s investment law, a National Trade and Investment Task Force was set up in Accra on the 15th July 2009 to monitor the activities of non-Ghanaian entrepreneurs operating in the country. Subsequently, the GIPC inaugurated Regional Task Forces in Tamale and Kumasi in January 2010.

In order to ensure a wider coverage of the monitoring of the activities of foreign investors/traders, the Central and Western Regional Task Forces will be inaugurated in Cape Coast and Takoradi on the 13th and 14th May, 2010 respectively.

The task force is made up of representatives from the Customs Excise and Preventive Service (CEPS), Ghana Immigration Service (GIS), Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT), Internal Revenue Service (IRS), VAT Service, Ghana Union of Traders Association GUTA), the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MOTI), Registrar General’s Department and the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre(GIPC).

The Centre in March held discussions with Cargill S.A. a multinational producer and marketer of food, agricultural, financial and industrial products in Switzerland on the establishment of a 450,000 metric tonnes per annum sugar processing plant in Ghana. The refinery’s productive capacity is expected to finally increase to 650,000 metric tonnes per annum. The estimated value of the project is US$100million. Representatives of Cargill are expected in Ghana in June 2010, for a follow up on discussions. 

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