During the meeting, he was informed by Wilo Executive Board member Georg Weber, Chief Technology Officer, and Wilo Chief Representative Dr Markus Beukenberg about the latest technological developments and solutions and the activities of the Dortmund pump manufacturer in Africa, and especially in Ghana.
"In our country, the topics of sewage treatment and drinking water quality are inextricably linked of paramount importance", explained President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo. He had already noticed that Wilo has been making a significant contribution for many years in the area of water shortage: "In our country, we have already taken significant steps in this regard using your products", said Akufo-Addo. The president was thus mirroring the strategic direction of the company: "Africa is an important continent with great potential", as Wilo CEO Oliver Hermes had already mentioned in an interview the day before. "We have been represented in North Africa and South Africa for many years now and are very active. As a part of our intensified globalisation strategy, we have now successfully manged to establish further Wilo branches and subsidiaries successively in East, West and Central Africa."
Ghana as a reliable partner in the region
"Since 2011 we have also been involved in the Ghanaian market", explained Georg Weber to the 73-year-old head of state. "We see enormous potential here: Ghana has had a stable democracy for 20 years now and it is a reliable partner for us in the region". Wilo now wants to support further positive developments in Africa with products and solutions for the water infrastructure: "We have built up experience, worldwide, in sewage disposal and the safe provision of clean drinking water", claimed Weber. As an example of this he stated, amongst other things, solar-powered borehole pumps or the development of so-called ‘water kiosks’, where clean drinking water is provided in rural areas using a technically complex purification process. These, in particular, have caught the president’s eye: "It is good to see that you have put your efforts into sustainable solutions, as this is the basis of a long-term commitment".
Increasing urbanisation and smart solutions
Growing urbanisation is presenting an ever greater challenge in Africa and large cities need infrastructure that can cope: "Ghana’s capital city, Accra, now has nearly 2.5 million inhabitants and the Greater Accra Region has over five million that all want to be supplied with water", reported Dr Markus Beukenberg. "In regions with great potential, such as Accra, modern and smart solutions have to be found that allow living areas of this size to be habitable and to secure the continuity of water supply and sewage disposal". In this scenario, intelligent pumps and smart solutions are the right way: "Only in this way can urban conurbations become advanced, future-orientated and sustainable ‘smart urban areas’", said Dr Beukenberg.
Borussia Dortmund jersey as a present
After visiting Wilo, the Ghanaian delegation travelled on to Berlin for a meeting with the German Chancellor Angela Merkel. In addition to the numerous positive impressions that President Akufo-Addo got during his visit, he was also presented with a typical local gift: a signed jersey from the football club Borussia Dortmund, of which the Wilo Group is a long-standing Champion Partner – very much to the pleasure of the president who is a keen football enthusiast.