The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has expressed excitement in collaborating with the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA) on the latter’s Impact Hub initiative, intended to provide relevant trade information to the Ghanaian export community to boost the country’s export trade.
The facility, christened the GEPA Impact Hub, and located at the African Trade House, Headquarters of AfCFTA in Accra, is fully furnished with computers, dedicated online resources, printed trade information and publications and a library, to aid exporters in accessing trade information.
GEPA has plan to rake in a revenue of US$25.3 billion from non-traditional export trade by 2029, and the Hub is expected to contribute significantly to achieving this target through the provision of key trade information to exporters.
Speaking at the opening and unveiling ceremony of GEPA Impact Hub, Chief Executive of the FDA, Mrs. Delese Mimi Darko, said the Hub, represents an excellent one-stop shop for harmonizing regulatory processes and provides an avenue for primary regulators to provide easy access to information for the needed support and information for the Ghanaian export community.
The CEO of the FDA said that, government’s agenda of industrialization perfectly fits into what the FDA has been pursuing in encouraging small and medium industries and entrepreneurs to manufacture products that meet international standards and the demands of the AfCFTA market. The GEPA Impact Hub, according to Mrs. Darko, complements the FDA’s efforts at removing barriers in the way of businesses to encourage companies pursue their dreams of manufacturing and exporting various food and drugs and related items to other markets on the continent. The FDA according to the CEO, is excited and commits to working with all stakeholders to establish a seamless system with GEPA that will offer and make information easily accessible to businesses and exporters who visit the Hub.
Mrs. Darko indicated that the Authority, has in recent times, chosen to focus on supporting manufacturers through its Industrial Support Department and the innovation of a 3-tier Progressive Licensing Scheme which allows young and prospective entrepreneurs an easy access to regulatory requirements needed to start and operate their businesses.
The licenses are colour coded, ranging from Pink, Yellow and Green. These colours categories are important according to the FDA, because even the small business owner no longer has to wait to fulfill every single requirement before getting market authorization for their products. The categorization of licensing is accordingly meant to streamline processes to ensure that every step is met and guided to achieve international standards.
“It is in this spirit that we partner with GEPA on the Impact Hub initiative by making FDA’s services available at the Hub to exporters, manufacturers and the entire business community to allow for quick and easy access to what we do”, Mrs. Darko explained.
GEPA’s CEO, Dr Afua Asabea Asare, said an important aspect of GEPA Impact Hub’s offerings is the permanent presence of other key stakeholder government agencies including the FDA to facilitate its services. According to her, the Ghana Standards Authority, Plant Protection and Regulatory Services Directorate (PPRSD) of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), the Ghana Free Zones Authority and several other agencies, are all present at the Hub providing key information to exporters on their services.
Trade and Industry Minister, Hon. Alan Kyerematen, lauded GEPA for the initiative of opening the Impact Hub and also commended the FDA, the GSA and the PPRSD for being the pioneer organizations to provide services from the Hub.
By Wisdom Jonny-Nuekpe