The newly installed administration of President Nana Akufo-Addo have revealed documents detailing plans to implement its manifesto plan which is, one district one factory in Ghana.
Establishment of factories, under the new policy is expected within the first 100 days of the new government’s assumption of office. And the aim of the key policy is to ensure that the country’s ongoing industrialization drive spreads to every part of the country, as opposed to the hitherto situation where the vast majority of manufacturing facilities are located in the five largest urban areas, namely Accra, Tema, Kumasi, Takoradi and Tamale.
However, there are still doubts as to how government plan to carry out this target. First, the document initially lacks details on implementation of the plan with tight fiscal constraints. But within the first couple of days of Akufo Addo’s assumption of office, those details are now emerging. It has been revealed that implementation is now underway with several industries identified and entrepreneurs having committed to financing them.
The new government has given the go-ahead for the one district one factory implementation to be managed by a collaboration between the public and private sectors through an organization which will specifically be set up for that purpose.
Further reports said dedicated organization – with three key objectives, will only serve as promoter and facilitator of the policy for ensuring a nationwide spread of industrialization, and will not be a direct investor in the resultant industrial projects.
Rather, the private sector will provide the investment, although local governments could partner them in this regard if such an investment of public funds is adjudged prudent and advantageous.
The three key objectives of the dedicated organization will include:
- To reduce the risks inherent in district level industrialization by providing crucial technical assistance, such as providing a capacity building platform for both investors and other stakeholders across the value chains on the strengths and weaknesses of each district; ensuring relevant insurance cover for investors and other participants along the supply chain to ameliorate their business risks and make them more attractive to financial service providers, particularly lenders.
- The second key objective is to reduce the cost of doing business by providing shared industry resources and revenues. Importantly, besides reducing business overheads of individual enterprises, this will also ensure adherence to best corporate governance practices, a crucial element in making a success of small scale businesses.
- The third key objective is to provide market linkages and access as well as generating demand for the products being manufactured by district-located industries, so as to guarantee sales revenue which is crucial for business viability and access to finance.
It is expected that the new organization will partner a host of other institutions such as Ghana Investment Promotion Centre, providers of mobile money services, cooperatives, Town &Country Planning Department, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, National Board for Small Scale Industries, GRATIS Foundation, Venture Capital Trust Fund, the commercial and investment banks, insurance companies, and the District Assemblies.
The organization will also partner the Ghana Stock Exchange and its subsidiary Ghana Alternative Market which will provide an exit channel for investors who want to cash in their investments for hefty profits over time. Several projects have already been identified by private sector investors who want to take advantage of the one district one factory policy and some of them are engaged in securing the requisite equipment for production.