Ghana-Singapore in Bilateral Talks: A Step Towards Enhanced Cooperation

Ghana’s Foreign Affairs minister Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey has held talks with her Singaporean counterpart, Dr Vivian Balakrishnan, in a move to further bolster diplomatic and economic ties.

In the meeting, held at the Singaporean Foreign Affairs Ministry headquarters, the two Ministers engaged extensively on ways in which the two countries can collaborate even further at both bilateral and multilateral levels.

Dr. Balakrishnan reiterated Singapore’s commitment to strengthening its ties with Ghana, viewing it as a key partner in Africa.

He emphasized the potential for mutual cooperation in areas such as trade, energy and climate change.

Two weeks ago, Ghana and Singapore signed a cooperative agreement under the Paris Agreement, following cabinet and Parliamentary approval in Ghana.

The agreement paves the way for Singaporean private sector companies with carbon tax obligations to undertake or sponsor forestry projects in Ghana to offset their emissions, and reduce their tax obligations while boosting Ghana’s forest cover and green credentials.

Consequently, the Government of Singapore is planning a field mission to Ghana to discuss potential projects under this agreement in July.

The aim of the Paris Agreement is to strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change by keeping a global temperature rise this century below two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Ms. Botchwey pointed out that Ghana has a favourable business climate, and that with the establishment of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area, headquartered in Accra, offered an incentive for pan-African investments.

The two also discussed global and regional issues of mutual concern and established that Ghana and Singapore share common positions on several issues of current international concern.

Ms. Botchwey, one of Africa’s leading diplomats, and former ECOWAS legislator, has listed climate change, trade, and education and skills development for young people among the pillars of her Commonwealth vision, as she seeks to take up the role of Commonwealth Secretary-General.

Heads of Government of the 56-member organization will vote for a new Secretary-General in October at their regular summit in Samoa.