The Vice President of the Republic, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has called for enhanced trade and investment between Ghana and the European Union in order to reflect the collective resolve towards helping to attain the vision of a Ghana Beyond Aid. Vice President Bawumia made the call when he took part in the 2018 edition of the Ghana-EU Political Dialogue in Accra on Thursday 6th December, 2018 in Accra.
The theme for this year's dialogue was "EU Partnering Ghana Beyond Aid", and was attended by heads of European countries represented in Ghana, led by H.E. Diana Acconcia, Head of the EU Delegation to Ghana.
Addressing the participants, which also included Ghana government officials such as Foreign Minister Hon Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, Defence Minister Hon Dominic Nitiwul, Interior Minister Hon Ambrose Dery, and Education Minister Hon Mathew Opoku Prempeh, Vice President Bawumia indicated that this year's theme, which is a follow up on last year's theme of "EU Partnering Ghana Beyond Aid", is indicative of the greater cooperation between the two bodies.
"These themes chosen for our Dialogues reflect the collective resolve of our two sides to re-orient our cooperation towards the attainable vision of a 'Ghana beyond Aid.'
"That, undoubtedly calls for enhanced trade and investment in a veritable spirit of partnership. It is therefore gratifying to note that since last year we have witnessed an increase in the number of trade missions from EU Member States to Ghana, and a sharp climb in investments, much in line with the optimism we have harboured and the aspirations we nurse for a Ghana beyond aid."
Vice President Bawumia pointed out that Ghana's relations with individual EU-Member States and the EU delegation to Ghana "have been excellent and fruitful over the years, thanks to our convergence of views on matters of mutual importance both internationally and in our bilateral engagements", in part due to regular dialogue.
"The mechanisms for dialogue provided for by the Cotonou Agreement have not only given us ample opportunity to regularly engage and exchange ideas in a frank and transparent atmosphere, but has also brought us closer in the spirit of a good partnership. Remember, Africa is the closest continent to Europe, historically and geographically, and the choices we make impact each other greatly."
The primary objective of such dialogues, Vice President Bawumia indicated, "should be to build on the achievements recorded since last year's event, deliberate and make concrete proposals that would advance our common interests, contemplate solutions to the challenges confronting our two continents and sides, and reconsider pragmatic ways to strengthen Ghana's capacity towards industrialization, and a brighter future."
"I hope the conclusions reached at the end of today's Dialogue will not only provide a better vision and end in consensus for our two sides, but would also provide guidance on how we collectively proceed within our common areas of interest, and in a manner that would further mould the quality and strength of our partnership in the years ahead."