The United States has enjoyed good relations with Ghana at a nonofficial, personal level since Ghana's independence. Thousands of Ghanaians have been educated in the United States. Close relations are maintained between educational and scientific institutions, and cultural links, particularly between Ghanaians and African-Americans, are strong.
Through the U.S. International Visitor Program, Ghanaian parliamentarians and other government officials have become acquainted with U.S. congressional and state legislative practices and have participated in programs designed to address other issues of interest. The U.S. and Ghanaian militaries have cooperated in numerous joint training exercises, culminating with Ghanaian participation in the African Crisis Response Initiative, an international activity in which the U.S. facilitates the development of an interoperable peacekeeping capacity among African nations. U.S.-Ghanaian military cooperation continues under the new African Contingency Operations Training and Assistance program; Ghana was one of the first militaries to receive ACOTA training in early 2003. In addition, there is an active bilateral International Military Education and Training program. Additionally, Ghana is the site of a U.S.-European Command-funded Exercise Reception Facility that was established to facilitate troop deployments for exercises or crisis response within the region. The facility is a direct result of Ghana's partnership with the United States on a Fuel Hub Initiative. Ghana is one of few African nations selected for the State Partnership Program, which will promote greater economic ties with U.S. institutions, including the National Guard.
The United States is among Ghana's principal trading partners. The Office of the President of Ghana worked closely with the U.S. Embassy in Accra to establish an American Chamber of Commerce to continue to develop closer economic ties in the private sector. Major U.S. companies operating in the country include ACS, CMS Energy, Coca Cola, S.C. Johnson, Ralston Purina, Star-Kist, A.H. Robins, Sterling, Pfizer, IBM, 3M, Motorola, Stewart & Stevenson, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, and National Cash Register (NCR). Several U.S. firms recently made or are considering investments in Ghana, primarily in gold mining, wood products, and petroleum. U.S. mining giant Newmont entered Ghana's mining sector in 2004 and intends to invest up to $1 billion. In late 1997, Nuevo Petroleum concluded an oil exploration agreement accounting for the last of Ghana's offshore mineral rights zones. Several other U.S. oil companies also are engaged in offshore exploration, but so far with little success.
U.S. development assistance to Ghana in fiscal year 2007 was implemented by USAID, the African Development Foundation, Millennium Challenge Corporation, and others. U.S. development assistance to Ghana in fiscal year 2007 totaled more than $55.1 million, with programs in small farmer competitiveness, health, including HIV/AIDS and maternal child health, education, and democracy/governance. Ghana was the first country in the world to accept Peace Corps volunteers, and the program remains one of the largest. Currently, there are more than 150 volunteers in Ghana. Almost half work in education, and the others in agro-forestry, small business development, health education, water sanitation, and youth development. Ghana's $547 million compact with the Millennium Challenge Corporation is the most recent achievement in the U.S.-Ghanaian development partnership.
Principal U.S. Officials
- Ambassador - Gene A. Cretz
- Deputy Chief of Mission - C. Patricia Alsup
- Director, USAID/WA Mission - Sharon Cromer, Acting
- Director, USAID/Ghana Mission - Cheryl Anderson
- Defense Attaché -Lt Col. Keith Blakely
- Foreign Commercial Service - Paul Taylor
- Public Affairs Officer - Traci Mell, Acting
- Political Chief - Robert Carlson
- Economic Chief - Joel Wiegert
- Management Counselor - Martina Boustani
- Consul - Mark Strege
- Deputy Consul - Nathan Simmons