Veep woos Silicon Valley investors

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The government of President Nana Akufo-Addo is reviewing a number of regulations governing the Information Communication Technology (ICT) sector in order to free up the innovative talent and capabilities of already existing and start-up companies.

The review would, among other objectives, also aim to make it easier to enter and invest in the sector in order to support the government’s desire to increase the use of ICT to solve peculiar Ghanaian challenges while ensuring the appropriate security assurances for users and investors.
“We are trying to build a new, efficient Ghana. The world is continually evolving, and this evolution is led by cutting-edge technology. We know there are many talented young men and women in the ICT space, and government is looking at ways to make innovating and actualising promising ideas easier,” Vice-President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia declared at separate meetings with leading lights in Silicon Valley when he paid a five-day working visit to the Valley from April 10, 2018.
The Vice-President, together with some government officials and the leadership of 15 leading local ICT firms, went on a visit to the technology hub of Silicon Valley, California, USA, during which he held discussions with the Valley’s thought and technology leaders to explore the possibilities of developing strategic insight, decisions and partnerships with the view of helping to enhance the digitisation of the Ghanaian economy to move Ghana beyond aid. 
Some of the companies visited include General Electric, IBM, GreyLock Partners, AirBnB, SalesForce, Stanford SEED, and Linked IN.
Touting the Akufo-Addo government’s determination to make Ghana the most business-friendly country in Africa, Vice-President Bawumia urged tech investors and innovators to take advantage of the many competitive advantages Ghana has, including location, a stable macro-economic environment and a large pool of talent to set up shop.
“We as a government want to set the framework, the environment, then move out of the way so that you guys can do what you do best. Whether it is in health, education, agriculture, utility service provision or wherever, you can come in and invest and help us with the sort of innovations that you can come up with.”
The Vice-President also called for partnerships between Ghanaian ICT firms and their Silicon Valley compatriots, insisting that Ghanaian talent was as good as any found anywhere in the world, if not better.
“The indigenous ICT firms are as good as any you can find anywhere in the world. Government is convinced about that and we want to encourage our local ICT firms as much as possible to be very competitive,” he stated, adding that “a collaboration between you is likely to be of mutual benefit to all parties.” 
The ICT leads that accompanied the Vice-President included representatives from GHIPSS, Hubtel, BlueSpace Africa, DreamOval, Rancard, Nsano, ExpressPay, IBM, and Bsystems. 
The rest were from IT Consortium, Trotro Tractor, General Electric, Callens Solution, Edel Technology Consult and the SoftTribe.
Also on the team was Deputy Minister of Communications and MP for Awutu Senya East, George Nenyi Andah; Mohammad Tijanni Habibu, Deputy Foreign Minister; Alex Tetteh Djornobuah, MP for Sefwi Akontonbra and member of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Education; and Halidu Ali Maiga, member of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Food, Agriculture and Cocoa Affairs.
The Vice-President returned to Accra on Saturday, April 14, 2018.


ABOUT: Nana Kwesi Coomson

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An Entrepreneur and Philanthropist. Editor-in-Chief of A Senior Journalist with Ghanaian Chronicle Newspaper. An alumnus of Adisadel College where he read General Arts. He holds first degree in Bachelor of Arts from the University of Ghana; Political Science (major) and History (minor). He has also pursued MSc Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Energy with Public Relations (PR) at the Robert Gordon University in the United Kingdom. He is a 2018 Mandela Washington Fellow (YALI) who studied at Clark Atlanta University on the Business and Entrepreneurship track. His mentors are Rupert Murdoch, Warren Buffet, Sam Jonah, Kwaku Sakyi Addo and Piers Morgan

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