Ghana Free Zones Authority (GFZA) has taken an upfront initiative to enact the Free Zone Laws and Regulations to position Ghana as a competitive and productive free trade zone.
In order to achieve this, the GFZA has mapped out appropriate policies and procedures that are constitutionally compliant while at the same time ensuring compliance with all international treaty obligations. The Authority has also established legal frameworks and put in place institutional arrangements that will result in effective economic management.
During the executive business forum at the Africa Industrial Trade Show (AITS), the Deputy CEO of the Ghana Free Zones Authority, Mrs. Kate Abbeo, emphasized leveraging the Free Zones regulations to get factories established all over Ghana. In reference to section three of the Free Zones Act 1995, she highlights the GFZA’s role in facilitating investment information, assisting with the smooth onboarding of free zones enterprises, and serving as an interface between investors and the Ghana Immigration Services.
The GFZA also does well to promote the free zones regime with support from the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre, Ministry of Trade and Industry, and Ghana Export Promotion Authority and capitalizing on trade event platforms such as the Africa Industrial Trade Show to inform investors of their incentives.
Mrs. Abbeo equally spoke of the complaint departments set up to guide investors through the free zones processes. This falls in line with the regulations purposed for investors and other clients who wish to partner with the GFZA to establish their enterprises. She spoke further on incentives offered by the Ghana Free Zones Authority to investors which include 100% foreign ownership, tax breaks, and other financial benefits, access to a well-educated bilingual workforce, and an attractive living environment among other monetary and non-monetary incentives.
She indicates that GFZA is committed to attracting capital and creating employment opportunities for unskilled job seekers in the country. The Free Zones are designated areas of land where investors from all over the world can open businesses and operate under a specific set of incentives to be able to create and conduct business without the usual regulatory constraints from the local government.
The Tema Free Zone Enclaves, for instance, was developed by the GFZA to create an enabling environment for enterprises and investors who want to establish industries or business activities that would have been restricted or prohibited within Ghana’s ordinary industrial regulatory regimes. The zone currently hosts 217 enterprises promoting Ghana’s industrialization and boosting the economy. Additionally, GFZA takes responsibility for nurturing SMEs into multinational companies like Niche Cocoa.
Concluding the presentation, Mrs. Abbeo urged all partners and stakeholders present to join the Ghana Free Zones Authority in achieving more towards Ghana and Africa’s industrialization.
The GFZA continues to develop infrastructure and basic facilities required to enable effective industrial regulation both at work and at play. The Authority’s goal is to diversify Ghana’s economy by attracting foreign investors in sectors benefiting from the country’s natural resources, providing a platform for Ghanaian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to grow in international markets, and creating jobs for Ghanaians.
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