Includes typical use of agents and distributors and how to find a good partner, e.g., whether use of an agent or distributor is legally required.
Last Published: 12/3/2018

While it is not legally required by Ghanaian law to do so (in most cases), the U.S. Commercial Service in Ghana has noted that U.S. companies who retain a local, experienced representative in Ghana experience fewer problems and a greater level of success when entering the market. For this reason, the U.S. Commercial Service in Ghana highly recommends that U.S. companies use a local business partner to help them succeed in the Ghanaian market. In some industry sectors, notably the oil and gas sector, U.S. firms may be required to operate through a local partner.

When choosing a Ghanaian business partner, some important factors may be:

  • The agent or distributor chosen understands the local economy and import/export regulations;
  • The potential business partner has sufficient experience working with international companies in the same or a related sector;
  • The Ghanaian company shares the same expectations as its potential U.S. partner. It is common for West African companies to overestimate the viability of commercial opportunities in their markets.
  • If the exported product requires maintenance and servicing, that qualified personnel and a reasonable inventory of spare parts will be available for buyers;
  • Whether exclusivity is a priority for a distributor or agent (note that most agents and distributors in Ghana represent several product lines so an exclusive agent/distributor may be more difficult to find); and
  • The agent or distributor has been subject to a thorough due diligence. (Based on past experience with U.S. companies who did not conduct due diligence prior to commencing a business relationship in Ghana, we highly recommend this step.)

CS Ghana can assist U.S. companies to find a local business partner or to conduct due diligence on a potential partner. Please see the following link for more information on the services offered.

Prepared by our U.S. Embassies abroad. With its network of 108 offices across the United States and in more than 75 countries, the U.S. Commercial Service of the U.S. Department of Commerce utilizes its global presence and international marketing expertise to help U.S. companies sell their products and services worldwide. Locate the U.S. Commercial Service trade specialist in the U.S. nearest you by visiting

Ghana Trade Development and Promotion