The Ghana Trade Fair Centre in Accra will be reconstructed with estimated funds of $2 billion dollars to be solicited from the private investors.
When completed it would become the first multipurpose trade fair centre on the African continent, Minister for Planning, Professor George Gyan-Baffour has disclosed yesterday.
He explained that the centre which is expected to be completed in five years would include aviation and petroleum hub, two five-star hotels, residential and recreational facilities, convention and exhibition centres.
“Other facilities include shopping malls, offices, leisure centres to enable the facility become the preferred international trade fair centre in the sub-region and promote trade between Ghana and her global trading partners,” the minister said.
Speaking at an investors’ conference for the Ghana Trade Fair Site Redevelopment Project in Accra, Professor Gyan-Baffour said work on the facility would start this year to enable Ghana host some of the best world trade events.
He added that the redevelopment of the centre was part of government’s industrialisation plans to enhance trade and investments within the continent.
He said the project would generate an estimated permanent employment of more than 10,000 people with estimated $150 million worth of business annually.
“An estimated 10,000 jobs including 3,000 direct and 7,000 indirect will be created through the value chain project, planning, construction and post-construction management.
The Ghana Trade Fair Company Limited has also made sure that the design incorporates the concept that would drive tourism through the various parks, as well as the retail outlets which will serve the entire sub-region,” he said.
Professor Gyan-Baffour indicated that the centre has been suffering from mismanagement, underinvestment and long periods of financial constraints that have resulted in the convention of the pavilions into warehouses and wholesale outlets.
“The result is that the country has no convention and exhibition facility that is needed for the aggressive exhibition and promotion of Ghana’s industrial goods and services to the increasingly sophisticated and demanding consumer,” he said.
The Minister of Finance, Mr. Ken Ofori-Atta urged investors, especially Ghanaians to channel their investment into the project.
He said the project has the potential to increase trade investments, revenues and as well as expand the economy.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Trade Fair Company Limited, Dr. Agnes Adu said the redevelopment was an opportunity for the company to make good use of its 156-acre land space.