PrimeNewsGhana

Akufo-Addo finally speaks on depreciating Cedi

By Justice Kofi Bimpeh
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Akufo-Addo

President Akufo-Addo has finally spoken about the depreciation of the Cedi, according to him, his government is doing all within its reach to arrest the free-falling Cedi.

The local currency has witnessed some significant depreciation selling at GH¢5.51 at the end of trading on February 25, 2019. Some currency dealers and treasurers have argued that challenge facing the cedi is supply issue and if the Bank of Ghana increases the amount of dollars it releases onto the market then the fast depreciation of the cedi would be over. 

Addressing a ceremony held at the Tema Heavy Industrial Area, Kpone, to commission the Fujian Sentuo Ceramic Tile Factory, President Akufo-Addo, said he is aware of the anxiety there is in business circles and through the population about the recent depreciation of the cedi”.

“I am extremely upset and anxious about it too, but I want to assure you that all efforts are being made to arrest the decline and restore the cedi to stability in order to improve the competitiveness of Ghanaian industry and I think very soon you will be seeing the results of our policy,” the President said.

Read also: BoG starts new forex directives to stabilize cedi against dollar

President on FSCTF

On the 80 million dollars Fujian Sentuo Ceramic Tile Factory, President Akufo Addo said the facility is a significant investment into the economy of the country. He emphasized that the facility currently employees about 1300 Ghanaians with the hope of increasing same to about 5,000. Ninety percent (90%) of the raw materials needed by the factory the President indicated are being sourced locally from the Western and Central regions of the country. To this end, President Akufo-Addo urged the inhabitants of Kpone to “embrace the factory and the work than is been done in their Municipality and give the Chinese promoters of the facility their maximum support”.

Managing Director of Fujian Sentuo

In his address the Managing Director of the Fujian Sentuo Ceramic Tile Foctory, Xu Ning Quan, observed that almost all the floor and wall tiles that are used in the construction industry in Ghana were, until about a year ago, imported from China, Europe and the United States of America in spite of the availability locally of over 80% of the raw materials needed for the production of tiles.

“The purpose for setting up this project is to take advantage of the situation. The varied benefits of producing wall and floor tiles locally are substantial and include import substitution and value addition” Xu Ning Quan said.

The Factory

Leading manufacturer of steel products in Ghana, Sentuo Steel of China, announced in 2016, it’s plan to open an $80 million ceramic tiles factory in the country. The factory, it said at the time would be the first in Ghana, where the product is imported at a high cost. In addition to the ceramic factory, the company also plans to invest about $60 million in a cement factory in the country in the near future. Sentuo Steel was established in Ghana in 2010, and began operation in 2012 after acquiring the former Wahome Steel factory. The Chinese owners hold 75 percent shares, while Ghana’s Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) holds 25 percent.

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Credit: starrfmonline