Panel discussion at the Tech in Ghana Conference
US Ambassador to Ghana, Virginia Evelyn Palmer, has commended the government for establishing itself as a hub in Africa for Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Fintech.
This success according to her is due to the country’s ability to harness technology as a key driver of individual, business, and societal transformation for the development of its digital economy and infrastructure.
Speaking at the 2023 Tech in Ghana Conference dubbed, “Collaboration, Community, and Capital” Amb. Palmer, commended the country for leading the tech drive in West Africa, creating an enabling environment that has seen the government embarking upon a digital program that is transforming how it delivers services, creating more transparency and efficiency.
“For example the electricity company of Ghana’s digitalization drive is helping to create a cashless payment system, reducing revenue leakage – theft. In March, ECG announced that it had increased its monthly revenue by 25%, a huge boon to Ghana’s economy” she added.
Amb. Palmer also announced the US commitment to supporting the Ghanaian government in building a robust tech industry in digital infrastructure, and investment, saying, “Our Development Finance Corporation announced a major investment in a data centre here in Ghana. Phase one will make this the second-largest data centre in Africa and rapid expansion is being planned”.
She entreated local tech entrepreneurs to be timely with their service delivery in areas such as completion of arrears payment, which are critical to ensuring Ghana continues to attract the next wave of investment and reinvestment.
Deputy British High Commissioner to Ghana Keith McMahon MBE, who was enthusiastic about the tremendous growth of the country called on the government to pass legislation that seeks to create a conducive atmosphere to encourage the development of tech companies in the country.
“I know of 360 tech startups in this country and that is an amazing number of people working on something so challenging in the health, education, finance sector, and other road industries and I hope there is more. It is our hope that in some time to come Ghana will be a tech powerhouse that will attract investors,” he said.
“Every government knows that tech can cure many problems and it’s appropriate for the government to create an easier space where tech companies can be established without going through a lot of paperwork,” Mr. McMahon said.
Founder of Tech In Ghana Conference, Akosua Annobil said the conference has served as a platform dedicated to strengthening and showcasing Ghana’s thriving tech ecosystem with the aim to empower local entrepreneurs to reach global audiences.
Speaking with the media Akosua Annobil said the conference which over the years has garnered the active involvement of several multinational corporations, decision-makers, investors, fast-growing scale-ups, and founders from the regions has empowered over 550 tech companies entrepreneurs, and startups to operate efficiently both in the UK and Ghana.
“Tech in Ghana wants to be the platform that promotes Ghana’s tech industry to a global audience, making sure that we provide more access to knowledge, collaborators, and capital and we want to continue to use the platform to elevate Ghana’s tech industry,” she said.
Akosua Annobil added that today’s Kumasi Takeover will showcase founders from the Ashanti Region who have built companies including Dext Technology, Incas Diagnostics, DefCanTalk, and Farmerline.
She said the Kumasi Takeover which has received endorsement from the Asantehene’s office indicates that the conference is not just focused on innovations in Accra but other regions as well.
Themed, “Collaboration, Community and Capital” Students and representatives from the African Science Academy, BlueCrest University College, and the University of Energy and Natural Resources would deliver presentations, demonstrating the vibrant pool of young talent emerging from Ghana’s educational institutions.
By Prince Fiifi Yorke