The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the World Business Angels Investment Forum, an affiliated partner of the G20 Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion (GPFI), has described the Government of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo as having a "business-oriented mind-set" which has set the nation apart in the eyes of the international community.
According to Mr Baybars Altuntas, this mind-set is reflected not just in the policies and programmes being implemented, but in the setting up of a Business Development Ministry, the first of its kind in the world.
Speaking in Accra on Tuesday, 6th August, 2019 Mr Altuntas emphasised that the international community is increasingly becoming aware of Ghana's attraction as the preferred investment destination and as a country with great entrepreneurial abilities in sub-Saharan Africa in recent times.
Mr Altuntas praised Ghana's investment and entrepreneurship credentials when he signed a formal agreement with the Government of Ghana, represented by the Ministry of Business Development, at the launch of the Ghana Country Office of the World Business Angels Investment Forum, the first such country office in West Africa.
The World Business Angels Investment Forum is an international organisation aiming to ease access to finance for businesses from start up to scale up, with the ultimate goal of generating more jobs and more social justice worldwide. It is committed to collaborating globally to empower world economic development by creating innovative financial instruments for innovators, start-ups, and SMEs.
"10 or 15 days ago, I was watching CNN International on TV. I was just moving from one channel to another and I saw Africa Market, and I watched the interview from start to end. The last question of the interviewer was 'which countries in Africa have very entrepreneurial, SME start-up friendly environment? In which countries is it easy to make business?' The interviewee said 'there are two countries, and one of them was Ghana," the WBAF Board Chairman disclosed.
"I was very happy to hear this because in February we hosted our general congress in Istanbul, and in in congress we have the World Excellence Awards Gala Dinner as part of the Congress... We received 32 nominations from 29 African countries for the best African Policy maker, to the most start-up friendly environment country. Every country was claiming that they have the best environment.
"When I saw that Ghana was the awardee for 2019, I immediately checked the Reasoning Page, because the jury members, nine members, prepare a reason why they decided to give this award to a winner. I saw an interesting detail: they said GDP in 2018 was very high, one of the highest in the world, and the highest in Africa. It is very difficult to keep the GDP of a country at more than 7% level in 2018.
"Plus, the activities of the Business Development Ministry is very interesting. Around the world, we don't have this kind of around the world tapping of business. They put a note as well: 'We are seeing for the first time, a country which has a Business Development ministry. This is a very good role model for all countries because business development is what, as a matter of fact, all governments around the world need. This is a very entrepreneurial mind-set, and this shows that this Government in Ghana has an entrepreneurial mind-set, and is trying to develop by developing businesses. So the result is the 2019 winner was the Business Development Ministry."
The international jury members of the World Excellence Awards also adjudged Ghana's Minister for Business Development, Dr Ibrahim Mohammed Awal as the 'The Most Business Oriented Minister of Africa'.
Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, who gave the Keynote Address at the launch, underscored Government's commitment to creating a business-friendly environment, adding, "Ghana is a haven of peace and stability, indeed the safest country in West Africa. Ours is a country where we insist on respect for democratic accountability, rule of law, and human rights. Our ultimate goal is to make our economy the most business-friendly in Africa where the private sector and the business community are at the center of building a progressive and prosperous country."