Wilson Atta Krofah (PACCI First Vice President) Hints by the Chamber of Commerce of Africa to Turks for Successful Investment in Turkey

Wilson Atta Krofah(PACCI First Vice President) Hints by the Chamber of Commerce of Africa to Turks for Successful Investment in Turkey

Who is Wilson Atta Krofah? Can you tell us about yourself?

I started professional life in 1957 at the marketing department of the Unilever company. Then I was promoted as the Ghana marketing officer of the company. During this period, I worked 4 years in Nigeria, 3 years in Kenya, 1 year in England and had the chance to gain international experience. After my years long experience, I was appointed to the sales coordination position at the Unilever company. I also served as sales consultant to many different companies. I left Unilever in 1994 to establish my own country. Based on my professional experience, I worked as the Ghana Chamber of Commerce President for 4 years. Currently I serve as the first deputy president of PACCI (The Pan African Chamber of Commerce and Industry). We developed projects to integrate African economy to the lives of people. As you know, many countries in Africa were far behind of the global system with their small and underdeveloped economies. We tried to lay the foundations of projects that will allow Africa to compete with big markets like Asia. We paid a visit to Turkey within the framework of my task in the businessmen delagation. During My visit, I had a chance to meet Ms. Şebnem Açıkdüşün who is a very powerful woman. We established the CCG Ghana company with her and no we make tradeof Turkish food products to Ghana. We also established the TURKFRICA brand in Ghana, a Turkish and African brand as it suggests, where we sell various industry products to West African countries. The Common Trade Treaty signed by 15 countries in Africa allows the investments in this region to address to a major part of Africa not only to the region where the investments are done. Africa is a very huge market. It is a region that holds all qualities of a huge market from natural resources to manpower and that is promising for the future. Ghana is a leading country in this region. Throughout my business life and tasks at various businessmen associations, I always tried to be a catalyst for the investments coming toAfrica. I am pleased that I have the chance to work for Africa to use its potential for its own good by assisting investors that will invest in our region. So Wilson Krofah is basically such a person.

What are your views about Ghana’s position in Africa?
Ghana is the first country that gained independence from the colonialists in Africa. Today Ghana is one of the pioneering countries in Africa thanks to its human capital and the importance it pays to people’s education. It has the capability to advance the African continent. It is a fact that the other countries in Africa were strengthened in their fight for freedom and independence following the leadership of the first president of Ghana when it gained independence. Today Ghana has still this role of leadership to Africa. Kofi Annan is one of the pioneering African leaders who also served as the first African President of the United Nations. All these had a great role in Ghana’s leadership in Africa. Ghana has to keep its finger on the pulse of other countries in Africa, keep abreast of the world and continue its economic and political reputation that it built so far in Africa so that it can set its leadership quality to a permanent base.

We have been told that Africa was a poor continent that is dangerous and fighting with hunger. Is this really the fact?
Africa is now one of the richest countries of the world. Africa’s basic problem is that it doesn’t have sufficient capability to use its own resources for its own benefit. If you have noticed, today many global countries move their locations to Africa. No parameters offered by Africa to the investors are less than any place of the world. The problem is that the western media always focuses on the risks and problems of Africa but rarely features its resources and advantages.

We can remark that you are one of the most powerful names inAfrican trade. Taking into account this position of yours, what kind of a road map would you suggest to Turkish businessmen who desire to invest in Africa?

My advice to the Turkish businessmen would be that they should be aware of the potential of Africa. There are investment opportunities in Africa in matters like infrastructure, raw material and water. Turkish businessmen should never forget that Africa’s potential in agriculture and food is very high compared to the other regions in the world. Investment in any agricultural product in Africa has the potential of bringing profit that is 3-4 times higher than Europe and the other regions of the world. Ghana’s investment platform is based on very sound political foundations. Today, Ghana’s political status is very stabile and the environment of trust for investors is guaranteed by laws. When you arrive in Ghana, first you will notice the smile of the people of Ghana, their hospitality and the respect to investors starting from the airport.

Which sectors in Ghana have priority for investments?
There are serious needs for investment in the field ofmanufacturing industry, construction, high road and rail way and energy industry in Ghana. Today, roads and energy are urgent requirements of Ghana. It is possible to trade many stones in the mining sector from gold to magnesium and currently strong and reliable investors are needed who will outpace current exports which are being done through unfavourable methods. As investments to Ghana will be easily scaled through the trade union treaty in other countries of the region, these are great opportunities which have always returns and high profit margin.

You have seen the African Business Life magazine. What are your views on the magazine?
I have seen that the magazine is a product of consistent and proper choices from printing to the quality of content. The content and reliability of the topics are also very important and the African Business Life magazine seems to have achieved success at this point. As a person from Africa, I am pleased with the existence of such a publication that will guide the investors for the regional opportunities we already discussed and with the fact that the pulse of the business life in Africa was conveyed with such an attention. I can recommend this magazine to anyone from within and outside of Africa who wish to follow the agenda and opportunities of the business life in this continent.

What are your recommendations to advertisers of the African Business Life magazine and the companies who have investment  objective to Africa? What are the challenges for them?
My expectation from the foreign investors is that they should observe rules and laws. It is important for their business safety that they stick to matters that will protect them in trade. Commerce centres starting from customs engage more innovative and open minded practices in Africa every year, however, the possible challenges for companies will be minimized through the assistance of the guides who have good command of the business transactions and processes in this region.

Are there any other systems that you will recommend for the growth of trade volume?
It is very important to support the development of educational institutions to raise expert labour force in the trade and investment management and to provide assistance to these institutions for the quality of the curriculum content. Apart from that, it is necessary to be involved in works that will make the investment environment in the country more attractive and increase the profit margins to more effective levels. Reduction of the capital costs is an important part of the improvements in banking system. In general, chamber of commerce continues its works to provide investors with a better business environment and to speed up the development of the country.



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