Ghanaian President, Nana Akufo Ado has stated that a Nigeria Ghana business council that will superintendent trade and investment matters between the two countries, is long overdue.
He however assured Nigeria that the Ghanaian government will consider the resolutions reached at the ‘Legislative Diplomacy Bilateral Meeting’ between Nigeria and Ghana’s senior legislators.
Ghanian President gave the assurance when the Speaker of Ghana’s parliament, Prof. Mike Oquaye, led his counterpart, Nigeria’s Speaker, House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila Gbajabiamila on a courtesy visit to the President on Thursday, a statement issued on Friday by the House Spokesperson, Benjamon Kalu said.
Ghananian president said the request by the Nigeria’s Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila for a review of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) Act to make certain concessions.
“I think the way forward, which is really what matters in situations like this, that is being suggested, one that I find very acceptable, the idea of legislation.
“The time has come for us to take these worthwhile steps. I suggested to Mr. President that it will be a good idea to set up a joint ministerial committee of ministers from both sides who will be responsible for shepherding Ghana and Nigeria issues, reporting to both presidents at any one time, and that is how they should be resolved.”
“I am hoping when I see him on Monday for the ECOWAS summit, we can advance these discussions and come to a final conclusion.
“The way you yourselves have come about this matter is very satisfactory, and it requires our support. The review that you are asking for, why not? if it works in our mutual perspectives, we can take it for granted that your request will be taken seriously. We will have a look at it”, the President said.
Speaking earlier, Gbajabiamila, who was accompanied by some of his colleagues in the House of Representatives, told the Ghanaian President that they were in Ghana to make efforts through parliamentary diplomacy to resolve the issues at stake”
“We have appealed to the (Ghanaian) Parliament that to look again at the issues, as far as the Ghana Investment Promotion Center Act is concerned, they should please do so.”
“If it is not possible, then let us look at ways the pain can be reduced, like those expectations required in the law.”
“We’ve proffered a few suggestions one of which is the establishment of Ghana Nigeria Business Council backed by legislation on both sides,” Gbajabiamila said.
The legislative diplomacy dialogue became imperative as the parliaments of the two countries sought modalities to resolve challenges and provide an enabling business environment for foreign traders including Nigerians doing business in Ghana. Several foreign businesses, many Nigerian-owned, in Ghana have been facing challenges in the demand for $1m capital base for foreign traders, as enshrined in the Ghana Investment Promotion Center GIPC Act (2013).