Ghana is the fourth largest trading partner of Canada in sub-Saharan Africa, but there remains tremendous capacity for substantial growth in trade and investment, the Canadian High Commissioner to Ghana, Martine Moreau, has stated.
Promising sectors for expansion, she said, included clean technologies, energy, mining, education, and professional services.
The Canadian High Commissioner to Ghana, who announced this in Accra last Wednesday, said the two countries shared a common vision for economic development.
At the celebration of the 156th Canada Day 2023 and the 66th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Ghana and Canada in Accra, the High Commissioner said the two countries were well-positioned to strengthen their economic ties.
She said Canada Day held significant meaning as it commemorated the anniversary of the nation’s Confederation, whereby on July 1, 1867, the British North American colonies of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and the Province of Canada united to form the Dominion of Canada.
American colonies of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and the Province of Canada “united to form the Dominion of Canada.
While our confederation is now 156 years old, we acknowledge that the people of our First Nations have inhabited what is now Canada for thousands of years.”
Principles and Freedoms
“This is a day, where, of course, we share many of these values, principles and freedoms with Ghanaians, and are rightly proud of our longstanding relationship, which continues to thrive upon a foundation of mutual respect, genuine friendship, common ideals, shared priorities, and multifaceted partnerships,” Ms Moreau said.
The High Commissioner also announced that the Canadian government was initiating consultations in support of a comprehensive Canada-Africa Economic Strategy.
“Canada recognises the enormous economic potential of Africa as last year, total merchandise trade between Canada and Africa surpassed $15 billion, representing an impressive increase of 56 per cent over pre-pandemic figures,” she said.
“Canada and Ghana are committed to gender equality, women’s economic empowerment, and the meaningful participation of women and girls in all facets of society.
Indeed, the evidence is clear that this common endeavour is highly effective in catalysing economic growth and achieving sustainable development,” she added.
The Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection, Hajia Lariba Zuweira Abudu, said Ghana and Canada shared an extraordinary history of bilateral relations that dated back to 1957, the year of Ghana’s independence.
She noted that throughout the past six decades, the two countries had nurtured a deep and enduring partnership based on shared values, mutual respect, and a joint commitment to progress and development.
“Ghana recognises Canada as a global leader in promoting peace, security, and sustainable development.
Canada’s commitment to these principles resonates strongly with our own national aspirations.
“We commend Canada’s efforts to advance gender equality, climate action, and inclusive growth.
Our collaboration in these areas has had a profound impact on the lives of our people, and we remain committed to working hand in hand to achieve even greater results,” she said.
Hajia Zuweira Abudu, looking ahead, said “there are immense opportunities for Ghana and Canada to deepen our collaboration in various sectors.
We are eager to learn from Canada’s expertise in areas such as renewable energy, technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship.
By leveraging our partnership, we can drive sustainable development, create jobs, and improve the well-being of our people.
“As the Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, I recognise the significance of our collective efforts to safeguard the rights and well-being of our citizens, particularly the most vulnerable among us.
“Ghana and Canada can deepen our collaboration and commitment to advancing gender equality, protecting children’s rights, and ensuring the welfare of all our citizens, including persons with disabilities,” she stressed.
“In Ghana, we have been working diligently to strengthen our policies and institutions to promote gender equality and empower women,” she said.
“We are fostering an environment that enables women to thrive economically, socially, and politically.
The country acknowledges the immense potential of our women and the critical role they play in the development of our nation, hence the need to further engage in these areas.
“Education is another key area where Ghana and Canada can further strengthen ties.
Canada has contributed meaningfully to our manpower development by making scholarships available for Ghanaians to study at Canadian tertiary institutions and by providing technical training opportunities that have enhanced the vocational capacity of Ghanaian workers.
“We appreciate Canada’s support in this regard and seek to further expand educational exchanges between our institutions.
Collaboration in research and knowledge-sharing will undoubtedly enhance our capabilities and accelerate our progress.
“Additionally, cultural diplomacy plays a crucial role in deepening mutual understanding and strengthening people-to-people connections.
Ghana’s rich cultural heritage and vibrant arts scene offer a wealth of opportunities for cultural exchange and collaboration.
“We are eager to engage with Canada in promoting cultural exchanges, showcasing our respective traditions, and fostering greater appreciation for our diverse heritage.
“It is for this reason that we implore Canadian authorities to make special provision for our cultural troops and performers to travel to Canada and share the rich culture of Ghana with the people of Canada,” the minister added.