President Nana Akufo-Addo

The European Commission has announced that Ghana will soon be removed from the list of countries that are deficient in anti-Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing.

At a meeting between President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and the President of the European Council, Charles Michel as well as the European Commission, the European Union acknowledged efforts made, by Ghana, in implementing the action plan of the International Country Risk Guide in record time.

The Commission has therefore congratulated Ghana for the reforms embarked on, as well as the sustainable, robust systems deployed towards being taken off the list.

According to a statement issued by Mr Eugene Arhin, the Communications Director at the Office of the President, “it is expected that the Financial Action Task Force, the global money laundering, and terrorist financing watchdog will in June 2021, announce that Ghana has been taken off its list of high risk, third world countries with strategic deficiencies in Anti Money Laundering and Countering of Terrorism Financing.”

On May 7, 2020, the European Union announced that it has put 12 countries on the list of places with weak or deficiencies in Anti Money Laundering and Terrorism financing laws.

They included Bahamas, Barbados, Botswana, Cambodia, Ghana, Jamaica, Mauritius, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nicaragua, Panama and Zimbabwe.

In Ghana’s situation, the action or directive was supposed to start from October 2020.

According to the EU, these weaknesses identified in these countries posed a serious risk to their financial system, hence the action.

Based on recommendations from the Financial Action Task Force, the Union went ahead to put Ghana on the list.

COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing hub

Again at President Akufo-Addo’s meeting with the Vice President of the European Commission, Valdis Dombrovski, the European Commission mentioned the selection of Ghana as a possible manufacturing hub for Covid-19 vaccines.

This, according to the commission, followed the initiatives already taken by the government of President Akufo-Addo towards domestic manufacturing of the vaccines.

The statement further noted that “the task force teams from the EU and Ghana will meet shortly to discuss modalities toward the realisation of this initiative, which in principle could be supported by the European Investment Bank (EIB)”.

Earlier this year, President Akufo-Addo said he was determined that Ghana manufacture her own COVID-19 vaccines.

He announced this in his 24th COVID-19 address to the nation on Sunday, 28 February 2021.

“I want to reiterate my determination that we should manufacture vaccines here in Ghana.

“To this end, a committee has been established under the chairmanship of the former Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, the world-renowned scientist Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, which is formulating a concrete plan of action toward vaccine development and manufacturing”.

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