Ghana: One of Govt's Positive Initiative Is Automotive Development Policy - - President Akufo-Addo

17 March 2023

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says one of the positive initiatives of the government is the automotive policy which is given clarity to those interested in developing any aspect of the automotive industry in Ghana.

The government, in 2018 developed a comprehensive automotive policy which has so far attracted global car manufacturers such as VW, Toyota and Nissan, among others to set up assembly plants in the country.

He commended the former manager of Volkswagen Group South Africa and now Chief Operating Officer of VW Brand, Thomas Schäfer for his dynamic and strong inspiration and advice in getting Ghana into the automotive space.

President Akufo-Addo disclosed this when the recently appointed Managing Director of Volkswagen Group South Africa, Martina Biene, paid a working visit to him at the Jubilee House.

Martina Biene and her group earlier this week commissioned the newly established $8 million VW Assembly Plant in the country.

President Akufo-Addo said the government was delighted with the great impact of the policy which continues to attract various car dealers into the automotive space in the country.

He said the government sees the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), as a major game changer for the development of the African continent.

Having the AfCFTA Secretariat here in Ghana, the President said, the government is determined to make Ghana a commercial hub to attract major business conglomerates to invest in the Ghanaian economy and take advantage of the trade market.

What the government is of much interest in, President Akufo-Addo intimated, is the backward integration whereby instead of bringing in the components to assemble them, the majority of them would be made here in Ghana.

That, largely would be possible, he indicated, where the continued process of upgrading the skill sets of Ghanaian engineers who work at their enterprises, as well as making use of the country's resources and labour as much as possible.

In response to the manufacturing of some VW components in Ghana, Martina Biene said that currently there are 18 component manufacturers from India, Germany Mexico and South Africa and England exploring the automotive ecosystem in Ghana.

She said VW would introduce these manufacturers to the Trades Minister, car dealers, government entities, officials of the AfCFTA Secretariat and infrastructure to understand what the ecosystem offers.

As a result, Martina Biene said VW fully supports the local manufacturing of some components here in Ghana, adding: "We believe in Ghana, we believe it is the heart of Africa."

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