‘Dumsor’ Costs Ghana Over $24bn – US Ambassador
Ghana lost more than $24 billion between 2010 and 2016 as a result of insufficient power supply and outages, Robert Jackson, the United States (US) Ambassador to Ghana, has said.
Mr Jackson, who was interacting with students of University for Development Studies (UDS) on Wa campus on Monday, said unreliable and inadequate power supply stifled economic growth.
He said US government’s Power Africa Initiative formed part of efforts by America to help Ghana achieve its vision to develop a strong and efficient power sector.
Under the second Millennium Challenge Compact, he said, the US government was investing 498 million dollars to transform Ghana’s power sector.
“Part of that 498 million dollars includes nearly 66 million dollars to develop NEDCo [Northern Electricity Distribution Company] into an efficient and self-sustaining power utility – one that can spearhead economic growth in Northern Ghana,” he said.
Mr Jackson said under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) law, many goods from selected African countries, including many made in Ghana products, could be exported to the US free.
Ghana’s Export To US
He said American customs experts regularly visits Ghana to ensure exporters know what goods qualify as duty free.
He said the US West African Trade and Investment Hub had partnered with Ghanaian apparel manufacturers to increase exports to the US from less than one million dollars in 2010 to more than 12 million dollars in 2017, making Ghana the largest West African apparel exporter to America.
“By the end of this year, we expect to boost Ghanaian apparel exports to nearly 30 million dollars annually and help put Ghana on the map as an international apparel producer”, Mr Jackson said.
He said when Ghana attains reliable electricity supply, what it would need would be a healthy and educated workforce to maintain it.