The 10-year Socio-Economic Development Plan (SEDP), developed in collaboration with stakeholders, encompasses all critical areas relevant to building a resilient, diversified and sustained local economy.
The concept is to assist the communities to improve industrialisation, entrepreneurial skills, community infrastructure, agro-industry, water, sanitation and hygiene, as well as education and accessibility to quality health services.
Mr Richard Jordinson, Senior Vice-President, Ghana and Tanzania Business Unit of the AGA, speaking at the launch of the Plan, at Obuasi, said the mining giants had since the inception of the Obuasi Redevelopment Project spent a substantial amount of money on various projects.
Out of this, 84 per cent an amount of US$860.1 million had been expended in-country on Ghanaian companies, some of them being Obuasi-based businesses.
The Senior Vice-President indicated that under the Social Management Plan, for instance, the company had successfully implemented varied programmes in the areas of education and youth development, health, social infrastructure, agriculture and economic development.
Notable interventions, he said, included the establishment of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) Obuasi Satellite Campus, a Youth Apprenticeship Programme in welding and fabrication, electrical technician, and mechanical technician.
The others are the Graduate Traineeship Programme, which was re-introduced in 2019, in response to the growing need for more skilled and technology-savvy workers in the mining industry.
The Programme aims to prepare young talents by providing them with equal opportunities for development and growth in the mining industry, while at the same time, providing the building blocks for a successful career.
Mr Jordinson assured the mining giants would continue to pursue strategic relationships with stakeholders to build resilient and socio-economically self-sustaining communities within the company's operational areas.
“We are here to build on the existing partnerships and engage in a dialogue that will allow us to implement our 10-year Socio-Economic Development Plan,” he stated.
Mr Simon Osei-Mensah, Ashanti Regional Minister, lauded the AGA for living up to expectations, saying the company's viable business operations and corporate social responsibilities had helped to cushion the communities for better lives.
Opagyakotwere Bonsra Afriyie II, Adansihene, urged the people to take advantage of the SEDP in transforming their lives.
He drew their attention to the fact that it was better to build a local economy that did not necessarily depend on mining for the benefit of the people.
Mr Eric Asubonteng, Managing Director, AGA Obuasi Mine, referencing the achievements under the Social Management Plan, said the initiative had helped to build the capacity of local entrepreneurs to thrive in their businesses.
He entreated stakeholders to be supportive in ensuring the successful implementation of the 10-year SEDP.