Ghana and Mexico have been urged to consider collaboration in brick making to open up the brick industry and create jobs for the teeming youth of the two countries.
Speaker of Parliament, Hon. Aaron Mike Oquaye who made the call noted that there are many business interests for that sector and stressed that a firm foundation for the industry would draw huge investment to the sector.
Prof. Mike Oquaye made the call when Director General of the Mexican Foreign Affairs in charge of Africa and Middle East, Ambassador Jorge Alvarez Fuentes, paid a courtesy to the Speaker in Parliament.
He noted that Ghana and Mexico cannot promote low-cost housing for their citizenry without getting good source of indigenous materials that cut across the entire gamut of building materials for the housing sector.
He said, “Governments over years have yearned and planned low-cost housing for the population but without a source of cheap local material for such industry, this will continue to be nothing but just a dream for our governments.”
He stressed that there can be no future for low-cost housing without resorting to the brick industry, which he noted is a huge industry in the Latin American country and for which the best practices could be studied by the Ghanaian business community.
According to the Speaker, the use of bricks for building goes down to the very foundation thereby making it a most useful material for constructing houses, which can also be used for putting up fence walls and roofing buildings and also using it for decorating entire buildings because of the varying colours.
Prof. Mike Ocquaye noted that Ghana has clay in abundance that could be used by an established brick industry and stressed that the fact that Mexico uses clay for the production of bricks instead of sandcrete makes collaboration between the two states a must for the benefit of their growing populations.
Recounting the relationship that Ghana and Mexico have shared over the past many years, the Speaker mentioned the rivalry that has existed between the two countries in terms of sports, especially boxing and indicated that Mexican boxers have been tough opponents for their Ghanaian counterpart to overcome.
“Such healthy rivalry has helped cement the relationship between our countries but we need to expand the frontiers from sports to business and I believe the brick industry is one area that our countries can develop and benefit tremendously from,” he stated.
Ambassador Alvarez Fuentes who shared the sentiments of the Speaker noted that Mexico, over the years, has built on very important historical traditions and gone from strength to strength particularly in the building and construction industry, which depends primarily on local materials.
Brick-making, he said, is one of the leading industries that have become very successful and providing the construction industry with pre-fabricated materials.
According to him, the brick industry is one area he has discussed since arriving in Ghana and how the country can harness the sector for the provision of low-cost housing.
“Mexico has made important institutional arrangements in this area and we intend to make this one of the key elements in our corporation agenda,” he said and noted that his country is keen to share best practices and stressed that some of the technical assistance Mexico has developed with different countries would be put in place for that objective.
By Osumanu Al-Hassanfirstname.lastname@example.org