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Unbridled free market has taken a toll on local manufacturing – AGI President

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The President of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), Dr. Humphrey Ayim-Darke, has voiced concerns about the impact of an overly liberalised market on Ghana’s economy.

During an interview on JoyNews’ PM Express, Dr. Ayim-Darke expressed reservations about the current extent of market liberalisation, stating that the openness allowing anyone to import a wide range of goods has adverse effects on the country’s foreign exchange reserves.

He argued that the unregulated influx of imports muddies the waters and sets off a chain reaction, significantly affecting foreign exchange rates and triggering confusion in the policy and lending sectors.

We practice a liberalised market where the extent of the libralisation allows every Tom, Dick and Harry to import everything and anything into the country, therefore, they muddy the waters.

“And the cascading effect is that it has a significant impact on your forex and once that happens, it triggers your policy and lending rate and brings a total confusion,” he noted.

He further highlighted the potential consequences of a liberalised economy, emphasising that Ghana, as a middle or low-developing economy, should not adopt an approach where regulations are disregarded.

Drawing comparisons with more developed nations like the United States of America and China, he noted that even in those countries, regulations are not entirely abandoned, contradicting the current trend in Ghana.

The AGI President stressed that the prevailing situation in Ghana allows for individuals to import virtually anything without adequate controls, contributing to the challenges faced by the manufacturing sector.

He asserted that the unbridled free market has taken a toll on local manufacturing, hindering its growth and sustainability.

Advocating for a more controlled approach to imports, Dr. Ayim-Darke urged a reconsideration of the current liberalized economic model.

He suggested that a balanced and regulated system would better serve the interests of Ghana’s economy, providing stability and support for the manufacturing sector to thrive.

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