Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has expressed optimism over a $15 billion funding partnership agreement and commitment reached between the Government of Ghana and China.
The funding partnership with China, Dr. Bawumia explained, is not based on the traditional model of borrowing and aid. The new model, he noted, is based on the bargaining power of the country’s natural resources such the 2.8 billion metric tonnes of iron ore deposits, 960 million metric tonnes of bauxite, 413 million metric tonnes of Manganese and not to mention Gold and Cocoa.
Dr. Bawumia disclosed this when he addressed a press conference at the VIP Lounge at the Golden Jubilee Terminal upon arrival from China after leading a high powered government delegation on a four-day official visit.
Dr. Bawumia said the country needs about $20 billion to embark on a massive infrastructure development and it is only appropriate to develop a financing model that leverages a small fraction of the country’s resources in order to secure the needed funding for the infrastructural development ambition of the government of Ghana.
The Vice President added that the Chinese government has welcomed Ghana’s proposed financing model and has committed $15 billion to support the several projects that government intends to undertake. A further 4 billion dollars partnership agreement will also be signed in due course after a few negotiations are concluded in a month’s time, the Vice President added.
In the area of industrialization, the Vice President announced that the China National Building Materials and Equipment Import and Export Cooperation signed a facility with representatives of Ghana’s Private Sector led by officials of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) which will see the Corporation offering direct financial support and material support for the one district one factory policy of government.
The Vice President additionally announced the renegotiation and reactivation of the China Development Bank 3 billion dollars loan agreement reached earlier by the Mahama Administration. Some one billion was released for the construction of Atuabo Gas Plant , however the remaining 2 billion was frozen due to some concerns the Chinese had with the Previous administration. The Vice President confirmed that the concerns of the Bank has been addressed and the country will soon receive the remaining 2 Billion Dollars.
Dr. Bawumia indicated that the China Railway International Group has also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with government to commit 10 billion dollars to the railway infrastructure development agenda of government. The President in the rundown to election 2016 promised to revive rail transportation in Ghana and the said agreement the Vice President believes would help greatly to develop the railway industry in Ghana.
As part of proposals presented to the Chinese government during the visit, the construction of some 90 bridges across cities, towns and villages of the country was discussed. The Chinese government has agreed to constructed all 90 bridges and the first interchange at point 7, an area in Tamale in the Northern Region.
The Vice President reiterated the need for hardwork to begin immediately to ensure that the commitments, agreements, loans and grants are accessed and used to implement all identified projects and programmes by the government for the benefit of the Ghanaian people. He added that various groups will quickly be setup to start work.