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We’re lobbying to have AfCFTA secretariat moved to Trade Fair site, says GTFCL boss

The Ghana Trade Fair Company Limited has signed an MoU with the Stellar Holding Pte. Ltd to establish a joint venture company for the financing and redevelopment of the Trade Fair site

The Ghana Trade Fair Company Limited has hinted of plans to engage the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) secretariat to move its headquarters to its premises when the place is redeveloped.

Work has commenced to redevelop the Trade Fair Centre into an ultra-modern trade hub, which will consist of offices, hotels, recreational grounds among many other things.

Appearing on the Asaase Breakfast Show on Tuesday (16 May), the CEO of the Ghana Trade Fair Company Ltd Agnes Adu said the project was put on hold initially due to the outbreak of the COVID pandemic.

“The infrastructure actually started in January, so today when you go on site, it is unrecognisable because there is construction everywhere because finally COVID let go of us,” she said.

“One of the things that we are actually doing is to engage the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) secretariat to house its headquarters at the site,” Adu said.

Listen to Agnes Adu in the attached audio clip below:



The Ghana Trade Fair Company Limited has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Stellar Holding Pte. Ltd, a company registered under the laws of Singapore, to establish a joint venture company for the financing and redevelopment of the Trade Fair site.

The agreement should see an estimated investment of US$1 billion, sourced by the Singaporean company for the development of 65 acres of the 140-acre large Trade Fair site, in the prime La area of Accra, the Ghanaian capital.

“This is great news for Ghana, the people of La, and the African continent as a whole,” said Dr Dan McKorley, the Chairman of the Trade Fair Company, adding that, “the COVID-19 pandemic dealt a big blow to our plans as investors cooled off. So we are happy to get back fully on track and with such serious group of credible investors as well.”

The two parties, (Ghana Trade Fair Company and Stellar Holding) signed the agreement on Thursday, 10 March 2022, in Dubai as part of President Nana Akufo-Addo’s investor-rounds in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), on the sidelines of the ongoing Dubai Expo 2020.

Sunder Kithani, the chief finance officer of Stellar Holding, signed on behalf his company, and Dr Agnes Adu, the chief executive officer of the Ghana Trade Fair Company, signed on behalf of Ghana, in the presence of President Akufo-Addo.

Several other senior government officials, including the Minister for Trade and Industry Alan Kyeremanten, Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, Mr Alex Quaynor, Chairman of the Lands Commission, Dr Daniel McKorley board chairman of Trade Fair Company, were also present to witness the signing ceremony.

The agreement

According to the MoU cited by Asaase News, “the Parties, following extensive discussions, agree to cooperate with each other to develop the Trade Fair site and intend to jointly establish a Joint Venture Company (JV company), with a suitable name as approved by the authorities, in the jurisdiction of Ghana”.

The MoU further states that “the JV Company shall be established for the purposes of developing and financing the development of world class luxury hotels, high-end malls and other residential and commercial developments (Phase 2) on the identified parcel of land belonging to the Second Party (Ghana Trade Fair Company) and measuring approximately sixty-five (65) acres”.

Disputes & Expiration of MoU

The two parties also agreed that “any dispute arising out of or in connection with” the MoU, “including any question regarding its existence, validity, termination, or damages for its breach, shall be referred to and finally resolved by the appropriate Courts in Ghana under the laws of Ghana and the decision of such forum shall be final and binding”.

Working meeting

Prior to the signing ceremony, on Wednesday 9 March 2022, the Executive Chairman of Stellar Holding, the Indian billionaire Sanjeev Mansotra, hosted President Akufo-Addo and his delegation to a working lunch, at the Bulgari Resort in Jumeirah, Dubai. Various investors and investment partners of Stellar Holding, took part in the meeting.

The participants included hoteliers, real estate developers, famous film producers, operators of shopping malls and industrialists, many of whom are part of the team put together by Stellar Holding, for the Trade Fair redevelopment project.

The parties are expecting to cut sod for the commencement of construction works later on this year.

Convention centre

In a related development, the Ministry of Finance and the Ghana Commercial Bank are working on a $200 million financial facility for the construction of a new exhibition centre alongside the biggest convention centre in Africa.

The 24,000-capacity convention centre is the centerpiece for the redevelopment of the Ghana Trade Centre, after the entire site was cleared last year for redevelopment to begin.

A convention centre was a key component of the original Trade Fair plan developed under Ghana’s first President, Dr Kwame Nkrumah. However, one was never built over the last six decades.

The timing and capacity of the convention centre now is seen as most opportune, complimenting Ghana’s status as the “commercial centre” of Africa, hosting the secretariat of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

It is expected to alder serve as the best venue in Africa for concerts, also complimenting Ghana’s growing status as the destination of choice for young tourists during the Christmas festive season.

Other developments coming up on separate sites of the Trade Fair will include a tech hub, built to serve a global market.

Stellar Holding

Stellar Holding is one of the holding companies of Planet One Group. It is based in Singapore and is one of the group holding companies for energy, mining & trading sectors and other special projects.

Planet One Group is a diversified project implementation group implementing projects across close to 10 countries in Africa. The group provides turn-key design, build and finance solutions to Governments to implement nation-wide social impact projects across emerging countries.

The group through its education arm, Planet One Education is successfully implementing the USD 131 mn NVTI project across 34 locations in Ghana. The project is almost at the completion stage and hand over has started.

It has a large team in Ghana for the various projects, generating direct employment of over 80 people across Ghana and indirect employment of hundreds of Ghanaians.

The group has also successfully achieved financial closure of Euro 158 mn for phase 1 of the 32 State of Art TVET centers project across all 16 regions of Ghana.

Planet One is also implementing projects across Senegal, Ivory Coast, Sierra Leone and Guinea in West Africa across various sectors. The group also has a large establishment in UAE with several offices and operating a large world-class higher education university.


Reporting by Fred Dzakpata in Accra


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