Minister of Communications and Digitalisation, Hon. Ursula Owusu-Ekuful has said nothing will stop the Akufo-Addo administration from making Ghana the digital enabler, and place of bridging the digital gap for other Africa countries with the use of AfCFTA (African Continental Free Trade Area).
“For all these reasons and many more, we have decided in Ghana, as the host and one of the earliest proponents of the AfCFTA, that we will not allow the old excuses of inertia, lack of capacity, resources and solidarity to continue hamstringing our forward march as a continent. So long as Ghana continues to have influence in the affairs of this continent, we are committed to promoting, as aggressively as possible, the use of digital technology as an enabler, catalyst, resource gap bridger, coordinating mechanism, playing field leveller, and dots connector in making the AfCFTA experience completely different from anything that has preceded it in the decades long quest for African economic and political unity.
“That is why through this government’s Trancop policy, we wholeheartedly embraced the creation and rollout of the AfCFTA Hub platform to generate digital resources for all the key actors and stakeholders in Ghana involved in one way or another in making the AfCFTA a success”.
This was contained in a speech read at the 74th edition of the annual New Year School and Conference by the University of Ghana in Accra under the topic, “Digital Technology Development Preparedness for AfCFTA” on Tuesday, January 18, 2023.
The Ablekuma West lawmaker further expressed concerns over the low level of digital prospects between African countries, adding that Africa must take advantage of the opportunities AfCFTA offers because it has the easiest way to attract billions of dollars in international investment to build pan-African platform.
“The tremendous growth in digital technology around the world, and also in Africa, offers us a new opportunity to take another look at our capacity to deliver. Take batteries for instance, whose prices have dropped by 97% since 1991, fuelling a massive Greentech revolution in many parts of the world and between just 2017 and 2022, the cost of electronic data storage has dropped by more than 56%.
“We now have at our fingertips, provided we are willing to exercise our minds, all the computing and digital resources we need to overcome many of the coordination problems that have made the implementation of some of the grand plans for a single African market so elusive. With a common digital platform, it is easier today to optimise maritime, aviation and ground intermodal transport and logistics resources than it was in the past.
“With digital business models, it is much easier today to attract billions of dollars in international investment to build pan-African platforms than it was in the past. With digital analytics infrastructure, it is also easier today to mobilise millions of micro traders to explore new sourcing opportunities in every corner of Africa than it was in the past” she added.