Chairman of the Tobinco Group of Companies, Nana Amo Tobbin I, says Ghana’s pharmaceutical industry is one of the best in Africa particularly West Africa.
The business mogul was speaking on Atinka TV’s new programme, “COVID-19-The Impact”. The programme, which airs on Tuesdays and Thursdays between 5 pm and 6 pm, focuses on the impact the pandemic is having on various sectors of the economy and how businesses are managing the situation.
Nana Amo Tobbin owns Ghana’s leading Pharmaceutical company, Entrance Pharmaceutical and Research Center which produces drugs such as Tobcee, Entramol, Zincvite, Kofof, Omal sanitizer etc. These drugs are exported to many African countries, particularly those in West Africa.
Nana Amo Tobbin said these African countries place a premium on drugs and other medical supplies produced by Entrance Pharmaceutical and Research Center and other companies in Ghana. He said this is so because the industry is very strong.
He, therefore, urged Ghanaians and the State, in particular, to continue supporting local companies to create wealth and employment in the country.
Nana Amo Tobbin said the COVID-19 pandemic has really affected businesses in the country, citing mandatory leave for some employees in the country. He added that, with the lockdown in full effect, companies will lose some revenue because workers are currently at home as a precautionary measure against the spread of the pandemic.
He further argued, if the trend continues, it might affect the salaries of employees while some will be laid off to cut cost.
He, however, commended the President, Nana Akufo-Addo, for initiating a meeting between pharmaceutical companies in the country and the government on how to tackle the pandemic.
He was optimistic that, the government will provide the needed financial support to these companies to enable them to produce important medical supplies to meet the current high demand.
Meanwhile, Ken Ofori-Atta, Minister of Finance has assured Parliament and Ghanaians that the US$100 million money budgeted to combat the spread of the coronavirus pandemic is ready and available for disbursement contrary to the views of some sceptics.
“Contrary to views of some sceptics that the money is not available, I wish to assure you that the money has been secured and is available to be disbursed in accordance with our public financial management procedures and rules.
“Indeed, from day one, the government has not stopped spending in the fight against COVID-19”, he mentioned in Parliament today.
Addressing Parliament on Monday, Mr Ofori Atta said, “The President is determined to cushion the economic and social difficulties this coronavirus is visiting on Ghanaian businesses and people.
“Our task, therefore, is to minimise the huge threat of job losses and the impact of job losses. The President and his team are thinking outside the box to ensure that that the principles of fiscal discipline are not jettisoned and, yet, still ensuring that people have money to spend,” he said.