Ghana’s Foreign Affairs Minister-designate, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, has sought the assistance of Saudi Arabia for the reactivation of the financial facility from the Saudi Fund to support the Korle-Bu Accident Centre project.
She made this known to His Excellency Mr. Ahmed Kattan, Minister of State for African Affairs, of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, when he paid a courtesy call on her office, as part of a three-day working visit to the country.
The visit was to allow the Saudi hold bilateral meetings with President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, and the Minister-designate for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, on Monday 8th February 2021.
Also, it was to consolidate Saudi Arabia’s relations with Ghana and to seek Ghana’s continuous support for Saudi Arabia’s interests in the region.
Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey thanked the Saudi Government for the funds which have been obtained from the Saudi Fund for Development, for the expansion of the Bolgatanga Regional Hospital, and the approval of USD$20m for the procurement of equipment to upgrade the status of that hospital.
She also stated the importance of the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on Political Consultations between the two ministries of the two countries, will enable them foster close ties on several areas of cooperation.
She reassured Ahmed Kattan of Ghana’s support for the two-state solution in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and called on all stakeholders to support the peace process within the framework of the UN.
The minister-designate also urged her Saudi counterpart to encourage Saudi companies to take advantage of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) to invest in Ghana and use Ghana as the springboard to export to other parts of the continent.
Ghana and Saudi Arabia established diplomatic relations in the 1960s, with the opening of the Riyadh Mission in March 1960 but since then, very little political and economic activities have taken place between the two countries except for the annual ritual of Hajj undertaken by Ghanaian pilgrims.
It is significant to note that Saudi Arabia has long coveted Ghana’s friendship and this has been underscored by the Kingdom in various meetings with officials of the Ghana Mission in Riyadh.