The Citi Business Festival’s forum on understanding the Ghana opportunity saw its panellists discuss ways Ghana can become a more attractive destination for both local and foreign investors.
The forum featured Yofi Grant, the CEO of GIPC; David Ofosu-Dorte of AB & David law firm; Juliet Asante, CEO of the Ghana Film Authority and Jacob Brobbey, the Acting Head of Markets, Absa Bank.
These are five insights as far as taking advantage of the “Ghana Opportunity” is concerned.
Stakeholders must work in a coordinated fashion to sell Ghana
David Ofosu-Dorte noted a lack of coordination as a major problem when it comes to selling Ghana.
This places a cap on how effective the branding of Ghana can get. This is in addition to the absence of a framework for plans initiated to market Ghana, he noted.
“As a people, we lack coordinated thinking and coordinated action, so we may be doing one thing, but it is never coordinated with the other things and as a result, we never maximise our advantage of that which we initiated.”
Ghana must sell itself to the rest of Africa
Juliet Asante stressed the importance of not focusing efforts on selling Ghana to just the west or Asia. We also need to sell Ghana to Ghanaians and the rest of Africa.
“Whenever we are talking about investment and attracting investments, we quickly jump outside of Africa… How are we selling Ghana to Ghanaians and how are we selling Ghana to the rest of Africa,” she said.
She highlighted the role mass media could play in this regard by sensitizing younger Africans to appreciate their own culture.
“That is 40 percent of the global youth right there. That is a big market we are not exploring,” Juliet Asante noted.
Ghana must secure mind share of target markets
The government should be working to make sure Ghana comes to the mind of the average person anytime Africa is mentioned.
“We need to focus more on occupying the minds of the people we are trying to sell Ghana to,” David Ofosu-Dorte said.
Because potential investors could be from different backgrounds with varying expectations, he said “we need to first deliver our visibility, and then we bring out the more unique selling point.”
Ghana must leverage the arts and entertainment sector
Because of her background in the arts, Juliet Asante advocated for the use of the arts in selling Ghana.
She noted that film is a great vehicle for selling Ghana because it carries other creative sectors along. She, however, described music as the fastest-selling point for Ghana.
“I can just mention two of the songs that have come out in the past couple of months that really sold Ghana.”
This means the government should be looking to also resource the arts and culture sector.
“If you are talking about support for the creatives, you need funding and a clear route to the market,” she said.
Ghana must develop a viable national branding strategy
A viable national branding strategy was identified as being central to positioning Ghana as an investment destination.
Jacob Brobbey said Ghana needed to uniquely package its culture, tourism, and businesses, among others, to foreign and local investors.
“The proposition is very important. It is a total package that we should look at when we are selling Ghana because if you want to pick the individual variables, it will be very difficult for you to convince any investor to come into the country,” he explained.
The Citi Business Festival is an extensive program of business events and on-air activities providing inspiration, business ideas, and information to persons who are starting, building, or growing their businesses.
The 2022 edition of the Citi Business Festival is mainly sponsored by ABSA Bank, with support from MTN Momo and MTN Business, Ghana Investment Promotion Centre, IT Consortium and GIRSAL.