The Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has reiterated that the US$19bn being given to the Government of Ghana by the Republic of China is not a loan but a joint venture between the two countries.
Members of the minority had criticized the Nana Addo led-government for borrowing the huge amount from the Chinese which they said could plunge the nation into HIPC.
But speaking at a China-Africa Joint Research and Exchange Programme organised by the Institute for Democratic Governance (IDEG) on the theme: “Building Resilient Industries and Infrastructure for Economic Transformation in Africa: The Role of China,” Dr. Bawumia said “we developed this new financing model…we are saying we can’t borrow, so essentially what we need was a new way forward and we sought to leverage less than 5 per cent of our bauxite to unlock close to 20 billion dollars.”
The Vice President added “We could not ask China to give us aid to finance this quantum of investment we needed. We could not borrow this quantum of money we needed, but we knew we had bauxite sitting in the ground.”
“The goal of government is to leverage our natural resources for economic transformation,” Dr. Bawumia said on Tuesday.
According to Dr. Bawumia, Ghana has over 460 million metric tonnes of alumina, which could earn the country around 460 billion dollars when refined.
“We have immediate infrastructure needs of say between US $15 to 20 billion in areas such as rail, water, energy and so on. So we have US $460 billion potentially sitting in the ground somewhere and we need US$ 20billion for our rapid economic transformation.
“So we need development partners to refine this bauxite, but we want to develop it in Ghana. That is why we want to set up a refinery in Ghana so we can refine and export.”