The Second Edition of the Citi Business Forum with the theme “After China, What Next” saw the assembled of great Academicians, trade experts and government representatives to discuss in-depth, the prospects the future holds and all it entails for doing business with a Civilized and developed country like China.
The Panel members for the event included; Dr Lloyd Amoah of the Centre for Asian Studies at the University of Ghana, Dr Yao Graham of the Third World Network, Dr Glenn Gyimah- a Ghana/China expert and finally Information Minister Designate, Honourable Kojo Oppong Nkrumah.
Speaking at the forum saw the three experts constantly warning government to give a second thought to their decision to enter into two billion, dollar bauxite barter deal with China.
Dr Lloyd Amoah and Dr Yao Graham hold the assertion that government has no strategy and plan pertaining to their deal with the Chinese who on the other hand have clearly defined goals and strategies to shift the resource base of the world towards their end. They said the country China is a Civilisation pretending to be a nation.
They explained their experiences with the Chinese and concluded that dealing such people needs policy and generational thinkers to look into the deal to put Ghana in the forefront.
A Ghana-China expert designer, Dr Glenn Gyimah providing how we can go about the deal said “that he believes that the government of Ghana can use the provision of skilled labour to benefit from its relationship with China” and he then added “If we do not take into consideration all these factors into designing our equipment, we end up bringing in something that all of us will be happy about but only for a week.
It breaks down, and then nobody will be able to maintain it, and even if we decide even to get back to it, we will realize that it will have been better we even abandoned it”. He argued that the government can only profit from Ghana’s relationship with China it prioritizes training of Ghanaians to take ownership of critical expertise.
Dr. Lloyd Amoah suggested a paraphrase of a key plan for the government which includes “Strategy, Mechanisms, Disaggregation, Monitoring and Institutions”; these he said, could be applied by the government for a successful deal.
Present at the event was former Ghana’s Ambassador to China, who said China has no need of our bauxite but food; he said bauxite is only a want and not their needs. He, therefore, suggested that we could partner with China to farm if we are looking for a better deal.
Despite the facts on the ground and numerous suggestions, Minister for Information Designate, Mr Kojo Oppong Nkrumah has defended the government’s decision to partner with China to exploit natural resources for national development. According to him, the current global environment makes China one of the best partners to work with for economic gains.
He argued that the government needs the resources to expand and spread the country’s infrastructural development. Mr Kojo Oppong Nkrumah maintained that the most crucial question is to negotiate appropriately with China to secure a better deal for the country, which the government is currently doing.
He ended “It is a logical decision to do business with the Chinese. The question really is what are the risks in doing business with the Chinese. If you scan the global landscape, you will find out that China has some of the answers to the questions that we are looking for.
Can you engage with China in a way that allows you to get these resources to answer your questions, mitigate your risk, and not leave yourself in a position where you are on their beck and call every day,”
By: Ebenezer Nkum/business.com.gh