Ghana and Switzerland on Wednesday signed two financing agreements totalling 13 million dollars to improve energy distribution and promote good financial governance.
The agreements were signed by Dr Anthony Akoto Osei, Minister of State for Finance and Economic Planning and Mr Nicholas Lang, Swiss Ambassador to Ghana, on the sidelines of the ongoing aid effectiveness conference in Accra.
Under the deal, 12 million dollars of the amount will be used to implement structural changes in the electricity sector to enhance efficiency and good management, provide the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC) with technical support to better carry out its tasks as a regulator of the electricity sector and to expand the national grid in the Central Region to reduce poverty.
The second agreement worth one million dollars under the Good Financial Governance Programme will focus on assisting the Tax Policy Unit at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning in its efforts to mobilise national resources for financing development programmes.
The funding will enable the Tax Policy Unit to better position itself to develop a pro-growth and pro-poor tax policy framework to reduce economic distortions related to taxation and strengthen the domestic resource base.
"The Swiss support aligns itself with the Ghana Energy Development and Access Project of the World Bank, and presents a case of good practice of donor harmonisation and alignment with the needs of Ghana, which are both important topics of discussion during the week's High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness," Mr Lang said.
"This trilateral cooperation is another proof of Switzerland's strong intention to reduce transaction cost for all parties concerned and to deliver support as efficiently as possible," he added, in reference to the collaboration of the Swiss Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) with the German Development Cooperation (GTZ) on financing the Good Financial Programme.
Swiss assistance to Ghana is in the areas of macroeconomic support, infrastructure financing as well as trade and private sector promotion.
Mr Kwadwo Baah-Wiredu, Minister of Finance, said extension of electricity through the self-help initiative in communities in the Central Region would promote economic activity and lead to a reduction in poverty.