By Prince Kurupati
The Commonwealth Entrepreneurs Club (CEC) is eager and ready to take the lead role in the development trajectory of Commonwealth nations. These sentiments were echoed by Hon Akwasi Opong-Fosu, the newly appointed Global Ambassador for the club. Akwasi Opong-Fosu is a parliamentarian in Ghana and is the founder of Africa Growth Advocate. For over thirty-five years , he has been a great public servant in Ghana serving in different roles including as Mayor and Minister for Local Government and Rural Development.
Akwasi Opong-Fosu’s extensive experience in the public service necessitated his nomination to become one of the illustrious CEC Global Ambassador. Speaking soon after his nomination, the former Ghanaian Minister of local government said that he didn’t hesitate or think twice about accepting the role as a Global Ambassador for CEC. This inspired by the organisation’s vision of holistically transforming the African landscape. “The goals of CEC which include: industrialisation, human capital and enterprise development, trade and investment are key pillars in actualising Africa’s growth potential and global competitiveness. As an advocate of Africa’s growth and sustainable development, I share in the goals of CEC and I am committed to working closely with CEC,” Akwasi Opong-Fosu said.
CEC is a grouping of business organisations, entities and entrepreneurs from within the Commonwealth region driven by the desire to create business synergies that will open up trade avenues thus help in shaping the development trajectory of the region in a positive way. Consisting of business experts from various Commonwealth countries, CEC aims at leveraging the acumen of these experts to fast track the wholesome development of all Commonwealth nations.
In its desire to expedite the development of the region, CEC takes a holistic approach when it comes to creating synergies. Businesses and entrepreneurs with interests in various sectors are all welcome. These include those with interests in the energy sector, construction, textile, infrastructure, industrial parks, mining, housing, education, automobile, agriculture, finance, SMEs & MSMEs, vocational training and tourism.
Based in the United Kingdom, CEC according to its founder and chairman Mobin Rafiq does not only focus in facilitating trade and collaboration amongst business entities and entrepreneurs in the Commonwealth region but also extends its wings to accommodate business entities and entrepreneurs outside the Commonwealth region. Apart from facilitating trade and collaboration amongst businesses and entrepreneurs, CEC as according to Mobin Rafiq also does have a social side. This social side sees the think tank working with country federations and NGOs to address socio-economic issues chief among them employment creation.
During its lifetime thus far, the think tank has already recorded some success. This has largely been necessitated by the existential structure of the nations that form the Commonwealth – 54 nations boasting of a population exceeding 2.5 billion people most of whom have economic interests and possess the desire to see their nations transform into economic giants on the global stage. Thanks to this, CEC has managed to achieve and is in the process of addressing its core objectives which include fighting “global poverty by fostering collaboration between nations simultaneously breaking the begging bowl or debt cycle.”
CEC has an open-door policy when it comes to welcoming new entrepreneurs to the club. All prospective members of CEC can simply express their desire to join the club by visiting the official CEC site here. Anyone from renowned business leaders, academics, philanthropists, diplomats as well as SMEs are free to join. Joining the club comes with many benefits which include “access to new markets, supply distribution lines, advice on go-to-markets from fellow club members, capital and financial market access, customer acquisition and trading opportunities.”
Also, members benefit from “free consultations on project delivery, marketing research and product placement, market insights on research publications and updates on its (CEC) latest PPPs, trade channels, and business and community engagement programs.” With such a wide array of benefits on offer, Akwasi Opong-Fosu advises all entrepreneurs based in the Commonwealth region to consider joining CEC.