Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, the Minister of Finance, has announced plans to establish a Diasporan Savings and Investment Account to attract people of African-American descent to invest in the various sectors of the country.
Dubbed the African Sankofa Account, the plan, which is to be rolled out in the next three months, will explore ways to target African retail other than institutional investors in the Caribbean and the Americas.
The move is to build on the successes of the year of return, which marked 400 years of slavery, and to enable people in the diaspora look to Ghana as a major destination for investments.
“There is going to be quite a number of meetings between the Ministry, the Bank of Ghana and the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre to discuss so that we will create this instrument, which will enable the funds to flow and how to get the retail impact of this investment account,” Mr Ofori-Atta told a media briefing in Accra on Thursday.
“Our expectation is that we could attract about $3billion, the same level as remittances currently in a period of a year or two,” the Minister added.
Mr Ofori-Atta said the Account would be a vehicle to the issue of Diasporan bonds in the future.
Mrs Barbara Oteng-Gyasi, the Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, said the plan to establish the account was in line with the vision of the Ministry and engagement with the people in the diaspora.
She said the Ministry had investment engagement discussions with people who visited the country on the investment opportunities during the year of return.
“But we also recognized that not all of them have the capacity to make huge investments. Some of them are also available to make little contributions and I believe this Account is going to give the opportunity to everybody to make an investment into Ghana and into Africa,” Mrs Oteng-Gyasi.
The programme also ties in with the Beyond the Return agenda, which has seven major pillars, including; investment by giving the opportunity to the global African family to invest in a bond or any other investment vehicle that the Ministry of Finance deemed appropriate.
Mr Akwasi Ababio, the Director of Diaspora Affairs at the office of the President, said the Beyond the Return initiative recently launched by the President had three key pillars out of the seven focused on investment via real estate, investment products and development of the country’s heritage tourism infrastructure.