The Ministry of Communications and Digitalisation has launched the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, (AfCFTA) Hub to promote, enhance and advance digital trading, electronic commerce, marketplace and general services in Ghana.
The AfCFTA hub initiative forms part of the government’s digital acceleration agenda.
Speaking at the launch of the initiative in Accra, the Minister for Communication and Digitalisation, Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful noted that the initiative would enable Ghanaian businesses to have a trusted profile beyond Ghana.
“It will strengthen the hands of industry and regulators to fight fraudsters who will also like to use AfCFTA to regionalise their nefarious activities,” she added.
She said that Ghana as a continental leader in ICT innovation and adoption sees the Hub as an opportunity to export its ICT goods and services across Africa and beyond, emphasizing that some of those prospects have already materialized.
“AfCFTA Hub should make it easier for Technology Startups, Small Medium Enterprise (SMEs), and other producers of ICT goods and services to find markets across Africa.
“Our business process outsourcing landscape can be revitalized by AfCFTA as Ghana becomes a hub for call centre, data processing, data science and various digital services for businesses all over the continent and beyond,” the Minster noted.
Mrs Owusu-Ekuful indicated that young entrepreneurs, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), startups, and all digital marketplace actors across the country would be brought on board to obtain a free AfCFTA Number to commence the piloting process.
She said that the Hub would build confidence in both the entities and individuals who use its services locally and internationally, adding that it was expected to create a true one-stop shop similar to Amazon, eBay or Alibaba.
The sector minister used the forum to call on businesses and industry players to speed up the adoption of the AfCFTA Number and the AfCFTA Common Transaction ID frameworks in Ghana.
All persons and enterprises engaged in the business of courier, postal, delivery, logistics, ride-sharing, e-commerce, digital trading and any enterprise of that nature are required to obtain an AfCFTA Number at no cost at www.afcfta.app.
The Deputy Minister for Trade and Industry, Mr Herbert Krapa, welcomed the implementation of the AfCFTA Hub in Ghana, noting that the world had moved to e-Commerce and digital trade.
He said the government would not only open up the required infrastructure but would also protect the SMEs and startups who utilize electronic platforms.
Mr Krapa said: “The AfCFTA Number and AfCFTA Common Transaction Identifier, together, constitute a bold, significant and decisive step to making AfCFTA work for our yam exporter, to by the click of a button, know where the demand is for her goods, who can provide her logistics, freight and haulage support and still be protected from the pervasive cancer of online fraud.”
Richard Aniagyei, ISD