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Despite the extraordinary challenges of 2020, Africans are working to realize the promise of the continental market. The discussion on AfCFTA has progressed from whether it will hasten region-wide economic development, to when and how this potential will yield. At the online University of Ghana School of Law, Law in Crisis Seminar of 14th January 2021, our Managing Partner, Adelaide Benneh Prempeh, presented a legal perspective on AfCFTA’s way forward in a post-COVID environment.  The other speakers were David Ofosu-Dorte, Dr. Francis Mangeni, and Prudence Sebahizi. The session was moderated by Augustine Kidisil. Adelaide joins the discussion at the 37th minute. [button size='' style='' text='LISTEN' icon='' icon_color='' link='https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/law-in-crisis/id1528210365' target='_blank' color='' hover_color='' border_color='' hover_border_color='' background_color='' hover_background_color='' font_style='' font_weight='' text_align='' margin=''] [button size='' style='' text='WATCH' icon='' icon_color='' link='https://lnkd.in/dxTxbNX' target='_blank' color='' hover_color='' border_color='' hover_border_color='' background_color='' hover_background_color='' font_style='' font_weight='' text_align='' margin='']...

The African Continental Free Trade Area (“AfCFTA”) promises a host of benefits for Africa at large, as signatory countries and the private sector proceed in rallying efforts. Heads of State of the African Union (“AU”) have endorsed a seven-pillar programme for Action to Boost Intra-African Trade (“BIAT”) including trade policy; trade facilitation; productive capacity; trade-related infrastructure; trade finance; trade information and factor market integration. The implementation of activities under the BIAT is expected in each member country for coordinating the goals of AfCFTA. As the host country of AfCFTA, Ghana is positioned to lead the way in implementing the programmes and activities required for a successful trade. In doing so, the country stands to gain a reported $82-million in trade creation, with trade diversion estimated at $66 million. This article examines Ghana’s attempts to harness AfCFTA’s benefits through trade-related infrastructure and trade finance. Adequate trade-related infrastructure is required for reducing distribution margins, lowering prices, and raising consumer welfare. It is also necessary in lowering transaction costs, adding value, and increasing profitability for exporters, thereby encouraging more exports.[1] Four of such major infrastructure areas slated to support Ghana’s free trade agenda include road construction, railway development, air and land port expansion.   Transportation Infrastructure The Tema Port...

In recent times, a number of efforts to clean up Ghana’s banking industry have impacted the approach to corporate governance within organizations, and have emphasized the importance of a well-structured and effective governance regime for businesses. In this installment of our blog series, we discuss the improved legislative and policy framework for corporate governance in Ghana.   The Companies Act 2019 The Companies Act 2019 (Act 992) has enhanced the ease of doing business in Ghana and promoted a transparent and competitive business environment. In furtherance of the Act, the Registrar-General’s Department has introduced a new electronic system for business registration and filing amendments. The new electronic system, which includes revised online forms, generally allows a company to be registered without stating its objects, except for businesses operating within specific industries. Companies are additionally required to provide information on Politically Exposed Persons who could be beneficial owners or members of the company. A major highlight of the reform is the introduction of the Central Beneficial Ownership Register for all companies in Ghana, especially for those in high-risk sectors such as the extractive sector. Disclosure of such information reduces the risk of corruption, money laundering and terrorism financing.  The law mandates the rotation of...

“This was an appeal from an application for stay of execution which was deemed refused by the Court of Appeal.” In the substantive case, Ogyeadom Obranu (“Respondent”) alleged that Ghana Telecommunication Ltd (“Applicant”) had encroached on his family land. At the end of the case brought before Agona Swedru the High Court, the trial judge granted the Respondent’s reliefs and awarded damages of USD 16,009,920.00 against the Applicant who appealed the decision. The Applicant also applied to the Court of Appeal for stay of execution of the judgment, after being refused at the High Court. The court granted the application on condition that the Applicant pays 30% of the judgment debt (GHS 21, 215,040.00), which it did. Unfortunately for the Applicant, the substantive appeal was dismissed by the Court of Appeal. The Applicant appealed to the Supreme Court from that decision and applied for stay of execution of the Court of Appeal’s judgement a day after. Though the application was granted by the Court of Appeal, the Applicant deemed it a refusal because of the terms given and repeated the application before the Supreme Court. The Respondent contended that since the Court of Appeal had simply dismissed the substantive appeal without more, there was...

Private participation has been a major driving force of Renewable Energy (RE) in Ghana. This being thanks to policy reforms in the 1980s which gradually removed barriers and created a level playing field for the participation of independent power producers in the energy sector, Read More...

Work From Home has become the trend of the present work environment, faster than expected. This new work arrangement allows employees, traditionally expected to work out of the employer’s office, to perform their job duties from home or other remote location. A Work From Home Policy is a formal document which regulates the terms of remote work. It provides guidelines defining the responsibilities and expectations of both employer and employee. It is sound practice for employers to develop a Work From Home Policy that can help in navigating the nuances of remote work and mitigating risks inherent in offsite access to the work environment. The following are the ten key elements of an effective Work From Home Policy: 1. Scope The scope of the Policy defines the intent and purpose of remote working, as well as the conditions for remote working. 2. Eligibility Some work functions can not be performed remotely. For these and all other cases, the Policy must clearly address the eligibility requirements for work from home, including any circumstances under which employees may be permitted to operate remotely. 3. Attendance, Availability and Dress Code Attendance, conduct and availability expectations of employees must be outlined, including legally compliant working hours and break periods. In an attempt to...

Ghana’s economy is forecasted to shrink by about 5% of GDP in 2020 — this being a baseline scenario impact from the challenges of the pandemic. Businesses are facing a testing time, the like of which many would never have seen before. Owner managed businesses are particularly hard hit in these times as they often do not have cash reserves to carry them through months of potential disruption and forced closure. We are now subject to a threat nobody could have foreseen and thus the Corporate Restructuring and Insolvency Act, 2020 (Act 1015) is the need of the hour. On 30th April 2020 the President assented to the Corporate Insolvency Bill, 2019 to bring into force a new legal framework for the regulation of insolvency practitioners as well as provide the avenue to help resuscitate temporarily distressed but viable businesses, entities and establishments from liquidation and its ramifications. The new law provides for the timely, efficient and impartial proceedings for insolvent companies and offers restructuring and insolvency solutions including administration, receivership and liquidation. However, it does not cover companies in the financial services industry such as banks and insurance companies which have separate laws covering their restructuring and insolvency proceedings.   Key highlights of...

The global workspace is fast evolving to normalize virtual work spaces. This change has prompted companies to upgrade their data protection systems to protect sensitive and personal data. More so, all who process personal data must legally recognize the right of an individual to the privacy of his or her communications. Read More...

“A mortgage shall have no legal effect until it is registered.” In 2007, the 2nd Defendant (the “Mortgagor”) mortgaged his property as collateral for a loan to the Appellant (the “Mortgagee”), on consent of the Lands Commission. Both parties failed to register the executed mortgage at the Lands Commission until 2010. Meanwhile, between 2008 and 2009, separate portions of the encumbered property were assigned respectively to the 1st Claimant and the 2nd Claimant (the “Claimants”). Subsequently, the Mortgagee obtained judgement against the Mortgagor for recovery of the loan and attached the property in question in satisfaction of the judgment. The Claimants filed their respective claims which resulted in interpleader proceedings initiated by the Sheriff of the High Court. The High Court held that the Claimants were bona fide purchasers for value without notice of the encumbrance and discharged the properties from the attachment. The Mortgagee appealed to the Court of Appeal and same was dismissed. The Mortgagee further appealed to the Supreme Court, where the fundamental issue was restated as “whether or not the 1st and 2nd Claimants/Respondents in the circumstances of this case were bona fide purchasers for value without notice”. The Court held that in assessing whether a purchaser of land is a...