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Ghana to Enact “Local Content” Law for Telecommunications

Telecommunications Ghana

Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, the Minister of Communications and Digitalisation in Ghana, has announced the initiation of a legislative framework specifically designed to foster the growth of local content within the nation’s telecommunications sector.

This initiative is a strategic move to bolster Ghana’s oversight and management of its own digital frameworks, applications, and services while reducing its dependency on expensive international expertise.

The minister explained, “We are in the process of passing local content legislation for the telecommunications sector and have directed that certain categories of managed services in the telecom sector should be reserved for local Ghanaian companies only. This initiative is crucial for building our capacity to autonomously manage our digital infrastructure, applications, and services. It is essential to move away from an over-reliance on costly foreign consultants and contractors, especially when we have capable local options.”

Owusu-Ekuful highlighted the economic disadvantages of the current reliance on foreign entities, noting that international firms often subcontract to local businesses yet retain the majority of the profits. “Many of these foreign companies outsource their contracts to local entities and pocket the huge profits… of course, those who benefit from the current system and their collaborators will protest that we must put the interest of the country and our collective development first instead of some misguided, short-term, individual benefit,” she remarked.

The minister drew parallels with the policies in Ghana’s Petroleum Industry, where legislation mandates prioritizing Ghanaians for employment and ensuring they benefit from the nation’s natural resources. This approach aims to ensure that the prosperity derived from Ghana’s resources is enjoyed predominantly by its citizens.

This proposed legislation is a part of Ghana’s broader strategy to enhance national development and economic self-sufficiency by leveraging legislative support to protect and promote local industries and workforce in the telecommunications sector.

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