As part of the unique supplement arranged by the American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM) Ghana to honor the July 4 self-reliance anniversary of the United States of America, the Assistant Editor of the Graphic Business, Charles Benoni Okine (CBO), spoke with the U.S. Ambassador to Ghana, Mrs Stephanie S. Sullivan (SSS) by means of a composed survey.
Below is the complete unedited variation of that unique.
Charles Benoni Okine (CBO) – The U.S. Independence Day is here once again. Congratulations! What is brand-new to commemorate in the middle of COVID-19?
Mrs Stephanie S. Sullivan ( SSS) – Thank you for your kind dreams.
And to your readers who honor Happy Fourth!
Although the U.S. Embassy will be commemorating our Independence Day practically as soon as again this year, my genuine hope is that we will have the ability to commemorate face to face next year.
This time in 2015, everybody were settling into the brand-new regular that the pandemic introduced worldwide– nose masks, regular handwashing, keeping our range, and looking for well aerated areas. I applaud the federal government and individuals of Ghana fortheir strength throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
The United States is honoured to partner you in our typical effort to fight this infection. My response might shock you however after 16 months of living within the boundaries of the pandemic, I think that we are turning a corner worldwide and have much to commemorate.
This is all thanks to adherence to mitigation procedures and the amazing success of science that pressed a vaccine to be established and released in record time.
The United States is happy to rejoin the World Health Organisation and to lead the worldwide COVID-19 action as the biggest factor to COVAX, the worldwide vaccine shipment program.
This program’s extremely first recipient was Ghana in February of this year. We anticipate that with the U.S. federal government’s extra vaccine contribution into COVAX, and the just recently revealed bilateral contribution, more vaccines will quickly show up in Ghana.
With extra vaccines dispersed worldwide, nations can completely concentrate on financial healing, neighborhoods can reduce back into a more regular way of living, and relative can securely produce more memories face to face.
CBO – What has been the state of U.S – Ghana bilateral relations throughout the years to date? Anything distinctively unique?
SSS – From my previous task in Ghana twenty years earlier, I have actually experienced our bilateral relationship grow from strength to strength.
We’re likewise happy with the durability of the U.S. relationship with Ghana, going back to March 6, 1957, when we developed diplomatic ties. The fourth of July marks the anniversary of our country’s birth and recollects turning points in U.S. history.
This year, I’m happy to share notable anniversaries of essential organizations that show U.S. worths which have actually assisted form the U.S.-Ghana bilateral relationship: the Fulbright Programme and the U.S.
Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) both commemorate 75 years and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and Peace Corps both turn 60 this year.
Created in the consequences of World War II, the Fulbright Programme shows our dedication to tranquil relations amongst countries.
For 75 years, and 63 years in Ghana, the Fulbright Programme has actually offered numerous countless trainees, scholars, instructors, and experts of all backgrounds and fields the chance to study, teach, exchange concepts, and add to discovering options to intricate worldwide obstacles.
Celebrating its 75th anniversary this year, the U.S. Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is the United States’ health care firm and is dedicated to producing a world where all individuals– in the United States and around the world– live much healthier, more secure, and longer lives.
Along with nationwide and global partners, CDC has actually dealt with Ghana considering that 2008 to fight HIV/AIDS, malaria, influenza, and other emerging illness risks such as COVID-19.
For 60 years, the USAID has actually been the world’s leader in global advancement. The USAID shows American kindness and has a longstanding history and track record of partnering nations all over the world, consisting of Ghana, to accomplish long-lasting, sustainable advancement and to enhance the lives of people and neighborhoods.
Using U.S. foreign help, USAID continues to stimulate financial development, promote peace and local security, enhance liable governance, and reinforce worldwide health.
We likewise commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Peace Corps this year, an essential turning point in the U.S.-Ghana relationship, as Ghana was the very first nation to get volunteers in 1961. As a previous Volunteer myself, I’m happy to state that the Peace Corps shows the very best of the U.S. spirit of service and volunteerism.
More than 240,000 Americans have actually served in 141 nations dealing with neighborhoods to boost education, health, and farming.
Close to 5,000 Americans have actually served in Ghana alone. CBO – The U.S. has a brand-new President with a brand-new program. What’s the U.S. President’s prepare for Africa and Ghana in specific? SSS – U.S. policy towards Africa has actually taken pleasure in longstanding bipartisan assistance no matter who holds the greatest workplace. The United States has actually regularly collaborated with African partners, consisting of Ghana, to reinforce democratic organizations, promote two-way trade and financial investment, and assistance local security.
The Biden administration worths African collaborations. President Biden is dedicated to enhancing our collaborations all over the world, consisting of with global organizations such as theAfrican Union His address to the AU Summit simply weeks after his inauguration was a clear example of this dedication.
The pandemic has actually taught us that, more than ever, our world is adjoined, and worldwide obstacles need worldwide options. Our shared U.S. and Ghanaian goals– democracy, inclusive financial development and success, and security– are the classic structures of our collaboration, so I’m positive Ghana will continue to have a consistent partner in the United States, as it has considering that 1957. CBO – Ghana has actually suffered considerably under COVID-19.
What is the contribution by U.S Government to help Ghana combat the worldwide pandemic? SSS – The United States has actually worked carefully with Ghana considering that the start of the pandemic and has actually contributed well over $30 million to support the COVID-19 action inGhana These funds are being utilized to attend to the instant and medium-term results of COVID-19 on the health, farming, and education sectors, and to motivate the hard-hit economic sector.
In the healthcare world, the U.S. Mission, USAID, U.S. Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, and Department of Defence have actually offered crucial technical help to reinforce contact tracing, monitoring, and lab activities in addition to provided life-saving medical products and individual protective devices (PPE).
To help the hard-hit farming sector, USAID reinforced links in between farmers and processors to preserve a consistent supply of items and funding to produce healthy food.
The USAID likewise offered emergency situation grants to regional clothing makers to repurpose their assembly line and train workers in action to the COVID-19 pandemic.
And to support main school age trainees out of school due to the worldwide pandemic, we released the nationwide radio program in English and 11local languages to enhance reading amongst Ghana’s youth.
As I kept in mind, the United States is the biggest factor to COVAX, currently having actually offered $2 billion and promised an extra $2 billion in funds to the COVAX center in assistance of vaccine production and shipment around the world.
And June saw 3 significant statements on the vaccine front– on June 3, President Biden revealed that the United States will designate roughly 5 million vaccine dosages to Africa by means of COVAX as part of the U.S. federal government’s worldwide vaccine circulation strategy.
On June 10, President Biden revealed the purchase and contribution of an extra 500 million vaccines to 92 low and lower middle-income nations and the African Union by means of COVAX.
And on June 21, the White House revealed that the United States will designate roughly 10 million extra vaccine dosages to Africa in coordination with the African Union.
In the exact same statement, Ghana was chosen to get bilateral vaccine contributions from theUnited States I ‘d likewise like to include the U.S. contributions to theGlobal Fund To date, as the most significant donor to the Fund, the United States has actually contributed $17.6 billion dollars. The United States Government in March made an extra $3.5 billion dollar contribution to the Global Fund particularly for the COVID-19 action, of which Ghana is qualified to access approximately $68 million to attend to the pandemic.
CBO – What is the state of AGOA now? Are Ghanaians leveraging it enough?
SSS – I wish to advise readers that the U.S. federal government restored the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) through 2025, so Ghanaian companies must make the most of the multi-year nature of this exceptional program.
AGOA offers preferential access to the U.S. market for over 1,800 items and is an excellent method for Ghanaian companies to export their items to the United States responsibility totally free. The Ghanaian federal government embraced an AGOA utilisation method in 2017 with technical help from USAID, and we were pleased to see stable development in Ghana’s clothing exports, for instance, over the previous couple of years.
Some of the companies that were making the most of AGOA were likewise able to pivot throughout 2020 to produce PPE to assistance Ghana’s COVID-19 action. But there is constantly space for enhancement, and we motivate more Ghanaian companies to make the most of the program. For among the primary tools developed to assist this sector– the West Africa Trade and Investment Hub– seeWestafricatradehub com
The Hub is a “one stop shop” for companies in Ghana and throughout the area that desire more details about how to export to the United States under AGOA so they can produce tasks and enhance exports.
This help consists of assistance browsing AGOA treatments and policies, and even assisting in linkages with U.S. suppliers.
Small companies are at the heart of any effective economy, which’s why our financial help concentrates on improving the competitiveness of regional companies.
CBO – How can U.S. business running on the continent make the most of the U.S. Development Finance Corporation? Is there anything more Ghanaian craftsmens and business can do to utilize it more than what they are doing now?
SSS – Private companies can access the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) to assist fund jobs, purchase political danger insurance coverage, and partly ensure financial investments.
The DFC is presently supporting over a lots jobs in Ghana worth almost $1 billion dollars. The U.S.DFC assistance consists of jobs to broaden healthcare centers, to produce power, and to enhance access to fund for SMEs in the farming sector. The DFC has actually likewise developed a $100 million loan center with CAL Bank to support on-lending to SMEs in Ghana.
The DFC is all set to help personal companies purchasingGhana Interested business must check out the DFC’s site at dfc.gov to examine the eligibility list.
CBO – Energy still stays a huge thing forGhana With your business working here in Ghana, has the United States any strategies to support the sector conquer its obstacles to make companies flourish?
SSS – Yes, we have approximately 120 business running in Ghana, numerous of which operate in the energy sector, consisting of oil services business, investorsin Ghana’s power sector, and U.S. providers of energy innovations.
U.S. companies move understanding, supply customer support, produce premium items, follow anti-corruption guidelines, and produce tasks.
A beneficial company environment, consisting of regard for agreement sanctity, is vital to bring in extra U.S. financiers to Ghana, consisting of in the essential energy sector.
The United States, through our Power Africa program, has actually offered considerable technical help to assist Ghana conquer its obstacles in the energy sector, consisting of dealing with the Ghanaian federal government, the German federal government, and the World Bank to establish Ghana’s Energy Sector Recovery Programme, which is targeted at stabilising the sector’s financial resources.
Additionally, Power Africa is working to broaden energy access to customers and companies that are not linked to the nationwide grid, and to increase the efficient usages of renewable resource with innovations such as solar watering for farms.
I ‘d likewise like to take this chance to discuss our resolve the U.S. Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC). MCC and the Millennium Development Authority continue to carry out the $308 million Ghana Power Compact to change Ghana’s power sector through essential facilities financial investments that will supply more dependable electrical power by solving voltage policy issues, enhancing voltage profiles, and increasing the power supply to Ghana’s companies and families, consisting of roughly 4.8 million customers.
The Pokuase and Kasoa Bulk Supply Points (BSPs) are the 2 flagship financial investments under the MCC Compact to enhance the electrical power transmission grid and circulation network.
The Pokuase BSP is a $50 million power substation, the very first in Accra, with the biggest capability in the nation. The Pokuase BSP was just recently evaluated and energised in May, and is now functional, leading the way for more dependable energy for consumers in Pokuase and surrounding locations.
Pokuase will quickly be followed by the Kasoa Bulk Supply Point, a $44 million power substation. Construction at Kasoa continues and will come online laterin the year. Unreliable electrical power leaves Ghanaians in the dark; these financial investments the United States is making together with the federal government of Ghana are leading the way for a brighter future.
CBO – Any unique message
SSS – Thank you to theAmerican Chamber of Commerce-Ghana (AMCHAM) and its memberswho excitedly signed up with the battle versus the pandemic in Ghana.
The American economic sector offered considerable relief to Ghana throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and I praise their efforts, noted online atAmchamghana org/covid -19- assistance.
To name simply a few of the lots of contributions by U.S. business, Newmont Ghana contributed more than $350,000 and individual protective devices to support health care employees and centers, supported the Kumasi Centre for Collaborative Research in Tropical Medicine (KCCR) with a GH cents 3.1 million contribution to obtain PCR screening devices to track the illness, then likewise cut sod in 2015 on a seclusion ward at St John Hospital in Duayaw Nkwanta, Ahafo Region.
Coca-Cola contributed to Ghana’s COVID-19 economic sector fund and offered drinks to frontline healthcare employees and those whose earnings were impacted by the lockdown. Johnson & Johnson, on top of establishing a life-saving vaccine, likewise contributed GH cents 100,000 to Ghana’s COVID-19 economic sector fund. And the American Tower Corporation likewise stepped up, contributing countless systems of PPE to numerous medical facilities around Ghana, and $100,000 to the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research.