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Tenancy applications at US$8.3 million facility are now open to businesses working in digital innovation.

Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) and ICT companies looking to be hosted at the US$8.3 million Accra Digital Centre (ADC) can now apply for tenancy, according to Ghana Digital Centres Limited (GDCL) which runs ADC on behalf of Ghana's Ministry of Communications.

ADC was built for use by local digital entrepreneurs with support from the World Bank and the Rockefeller Foundation. GDCL has not set a closing date for applications.

Eric Ofosu Nkansah, CEO of GDCL and appointed by Nana Akufo-Addo, Ghana's then newly-elected president in February 2017, says ADC is a sign of the Ghanaian government's belief in the potential of local digital companies and entrepreneurs.

"High rental fees for office space in Accra have hindered the growth of the BPO sector and the government has decided to provide affordable workspace to attract more companies in the BPO space to help drive the BPO/ICT sectors."

BPO tenants at ADC must have a plan and demonstrate the potential to grow to 200 or more employees within two months in order to qualify for a place, while every applicant must be legally registered or have a plan to do so to be eligible.

Among the latest technology brought into ADC just this week is a production scanner that is able to scan 200,000 sheets per day. The scanner will be used as part of efforts to digitise records in the country according to ADC.

ADC is a collection of 12 old warehouses that belonged to Ghana's Public Works Department and were renovated for each building to occupy 735 square metres. The ADC set itself a goal of creating up to 10,000 direct jobs, mostly targeting youth.

John Dramani Mahama, former president of Ghana who opened the ADC months before the end of his tenure as president in January 2017, has emphasised the employment benefits of the project.

"The Accra Digital Centre is a major step in putting Ghana on the map as a credible bonafide destination for local and global IT and outsourcing companies. And it is testimony to my government's commitment to massive job creation. This is because as manufacturing becomes increasingly automated and robots replace human capital, the IT industry continues to be one of the areas that has rapid solutions to rapidly address our graduate and youth employment challenges. This includes outsourcing and the new economy jobs."

Henry Geoffrey Kerali, World Bank Country Director says the organisation is proud to be associated with the project, which he believes will contribute towards efficiency in e-governance and create jobs.

"The impact of the centre would go beyond Accra and contribute about 25 percent of Ghana's Gross Domestic Product in the coming years."

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Autor(en)/Author(s): Matshelane Mamabolo

Quelle/Source: ITWeb Africa, 30.08.2017

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