Ghana has made much progress over the past decade in fighting poverty and fostering sustainable development. However, as a lower-middle income country Ghana has to deal with new and more complex challenges. Ghana needs to make economic growth more inclusive and broad based, mobilize more domestic resources to finance its long term development and strengthen the capacity of institutions to deal with the consequences of modernization, such as rapid urbanization.
The signing of three project agreements, which took place during the visit of Mr. Ivo Germann, the Head of Operations of the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) underscores Switzerland’s continued commitment to work with Ghana in areas that are critical for inclusive and sustainable growth.
The first project agreement will support the efforts of the Government of Ghana to mobilize more domestic revenues. The project will be implemented in partnership with the German Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ). It is a continuation of Switzerland’s long standing support for tax reforms which started in 2008. Support will be provided among others to the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA). In addition, the project also envisages collaboration between the GRA and the Swiss Federal Tax Administration. Switzerland will provide a total of USD 6.7 million in grants for a six-year period from 2016 to 2022.
The second project agreement will work with the Government of Ghana to improve mobility and accessibility in the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area. The project will develop the capacity of the responsible authorities, provide financing for infrastructure measures and build a partnership between KNUST and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL) for urban mobility planning. Switzerland will provide a total of USD 6 million in grants for a four-year period from 2016 to 2019.
The third project agreement will establish a Remittance Grant Facility. The facility will function as a challenge fund and work with the private sector to stimulate the development of remittance-based financial products and services with the objective to expand financial inclusion and to channel remittances to more productive uses. Switzerland will provide a total of USD 2.6 million in grants for a first phase of four years from 2016 to 2019.
Ghana has been a priority country for Switzerland’s economic development cooperation since 2002. The economic development cooperation program focuses on promoting good
economic governance and strong institutions and strengthening competitiveness and inclusiveness. Switzerland provides assistance in the areas of economic and financial management, private sector development and entrepreneurship, sustainable trade and urban infrastructure with an average annual budget of around CHF 20 million in grants.