The Ghana Export Import Bank (Ghana EXIM) was yesterday launched in Accra to provide long term and patient capital, export insurance and financial advisory services for businesses operating in the export end of the market.
The launch was the outcome of two years of preparatory work, which included the merger of three institutions and the subsequent passage of the Ghana EXIM Bank Act by Parliament.
By that gesture, Ghana has now joined the league of developing and developed countries that use EXIM banks to mobilise long term, stable capital, which they use to support both private and state-owned enterprises that focus on exports.
The Finance Minister, Mr Seth Terkper, who launched the bank on behalf of President John Mahama, explained that the establishment of the bank was a bold effort towards achieving Ghana’s long-standing quest for the promotion of non-traditional exports (NTEs).
With a mandate to provide trade and investment credit or loans for the export market, the President said the introduction of the Ghana EXIM Bank would help to accelerate the country’s drive towards creating a more diversified economy.
“The EXIM Bank we are launching today is one of the several initiatives that the government is putting in place to substantively support the private sector as well as government business entities (GBEs), which are mainly called state-owned enterprises (SoEs) in Ghana, to transform the economy,” the President said.
With the Ghana EXIM Bank now in place, President Mahama said export-oriented businesses could be assured of financial support, expert advice and grants, which will help them to expand and be able to increase the country’s export base.
He observed that the bank’s core mandate of stimulating growth in export-oriented businesses was an integral part of the government’s goal of promoting an accelerated and inclusive growth strategy.
“Hence, the Ghana EXIM Bank is indispensable to the transformation agenda for the ensuing years and will help in consolidating several of the gains that we have been making on the macroeconomic front,” the President said.
“It will support and develop, directly or indirectly, trade between Ghana and other countries, and Ghana’s capacity and competitiveness in the global marketplace,” he said.
The bank will assist Ghanaian exporters to compete internationally providing insurance, guarantees and export financing facilities to support their overseas activities.
To enable it to achieve its objectives fully, President Mahama reminded the bank of the need to collaborate closely with export facilitating institutions and programmes such as the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) and Food and Drugs Authority (FDA).
This, he said, was needed to ensure that exporters and their produce met the requisite standards for the regional, continental and overseas markets.
He further charged the Ghana Exports Promotion Authority (GEPA) and the Ghana Free Zones Board (GFZB) to look for markets and create awareness of made-in-Ghana goods, where businesses that had been supported by the Ghana EXIM Bank to which they could export their products.
The Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, who chaired the ceremony, said the establishment of the EXIM Bank was part of efforts geared towards strengthening the private sector to be able to compete effectively.
He advised the bank to operate like a truly commercial entity with a focus on supporting businesses to expand, innovate and improve upon their capacity to be able to export.The Ghana EXIM Bank is the outcome of a merger of the Export Trade, Agricultural and Industrial Development Fund (EDAIF), the Export Finance Company Limited (EFCL) and the Eximguaranty Company Limited (ECL).