A presidential candidate for Ghana’s election, David Apasera, who is the candidate of the People’s National Convention (PNC) has promised to stop importation of petrol if elected President.
Apasera made this known in an interview,
Apasera said, ‘’We still look at ourselves and wonder when we will be among the first-world countries. I don’t think those countries took up to 60 years to evolve.
‘’We must begin from somewhere and so one, we have to begin to look within and make sure we have the self-confidence. Whatever we are bringing from outside, we can produce it here.
‘’First, we will stop the importation of finished petroleum products. When the first president constructed a refinery then, we never thought we would even produce crude oil. But his vision was that crude is cheap, buy the crude oil, come and refine it and sell it to your population.
‘’Now, we have left the refinery to rot. We are producing crude oil, we export all the crude oil and then we go and buy finished petroleum products – petrol, diesel and so on, with dollars. And so, our costs are running in dollars not cedis, depreciating the cedis.
‘’We are saying the first thing we are going to do is to make sure that our refineries are functioning for the purpose of refining our crude oil to meet our demands and to export to other non-producing countries. By doing so, we get to stabilise our tenancy agreement.
‘’And the second is that we will add value to what we are exporting and also have a higher income in the aspect of crude oil.
‘’The other thing we will begin to do is to target rice production because we spend millions of dollars every year importing it. And the countries we import it from do not have more fertile ground than we do. They are just committed to doing these things more than we are. So we will go to the areas where there are difficulties, the government will apply for the land and then we will site our mills around there and employ able men to assist in the farms.
‘’In two years after we come to power, we should be able to stop the importation of rice and that will help stabilise our currency and generate jobs for the youth.
‘’We are also going to make sure that we have farmers to produce maize and millet for poultry and other animals. And why should we be importing frozen chicken when we can rear ours? It does not make sense. If we can provide investment capitals to individuals no matter how small they are, they will produce for our domestic market and someday, we will export to other countries.
‘’Fortunately now, we have the Africa free trade and that gives us a very wide population to export to. So when you are producing in Ghana, you will no longer have problems exporting to other countries.
‘’If we are able to deal with corruption to a certain level, you instill confidence in the business community. That way, anyone coming to invest in your country is assured that he will not be cheated.’’