Ghana’s leading Cement manufacturer, Ghacem has launched its 50th anniversary with a call on government to create an enabling environment for businesses to compete fairly.
Managing Director of Ghacem, Mr. Morten Gade called for fair competition and noted that it helps companies grow and “when you have unfair competition it means that there will be an undue advantage and with that you can underbid more in the market.”
Speaking to the media after the launch of the company’s 50th anniversary celebration in Accra on Tuesday, Mr Gade said “We don’t have problem with the imported cements. The problem is when there is an unfair advantage where the right utilities are not paid or when there are special advantages for the foreign ones,” he said.
The Managing Director further stated that the operations of Ghacem has “a chain of added values in terms of industrial competence, employment, direct investment, local sub-contracting and the use of local raw materials as against imported finished cement products.”
He added that the company continuous to contribute to the economic development of the country with adequate investment portfolio exclusively tailored to meet the nation’s needs in terms of cement production.
“Our total strategic expansion investment cost in Ghacem reached $52 million between 2012 and 2015,” he stressed and added that “last year, Ghacem contributed GHC250 million in taxes and utilities to government. We are one of the major tax payers in the country.”
He further paid tribute to Dr J. A. Addison, founding member of GHACEM, for his role in establishing the company, and described him as “extraordinary visionary”.
Chairman of the Anniversary Planning Committee and Commercial Director of Ghacem, Nana Philip Archer on his part outlined the various activities schedule within the three-month period of celebration.
Nana Archer said the Managing Director will host a breakfast meeting with retired staff; engage in health walk and float in Tema, Accra, Takoradi and Kumasi; staff party, fun games, donate to Tema General Hospital and Efia Nkwanta Hospital in Sekondi and climax it with a presidential ball.
Board Member of Ghacem and Special Host for the launch, Dr. Ishmael Yamson on his part called on government to ensure high quality housing and infrastructure by bringing sanity to the cement industry.
Dr. Yamson stressed that players in the “cement industry must operate with integrity and sound conscience, ensuring that only the best cement products get to the market. Our regulators must ensure that all the local manufacturers and importers play by the rules.”
Launching the anniversary, Deputy Trade and Industry Minister, Robert Ahomka Lindsey commended Ghacem for surviving the test of time and stressed government’s commitment to industry transformation.
“We are aware of the challenges and will address those challenges to make sure you have a level playing field. It is important because we believe in industrial transformation of industries, it is not something that sits on wind, it is on foundation, we will ensure we do that and the GITC is an important asset to that.
We are also keen to make sure that the new legal process that is brought in, the LI 2240 will make sure that it works well.”
He also maintained that government’s industrial transformation agenda gives companies opportunities to succeed.