Ghana: GDP breaks downward trend; registers impressive growth rate of 8.5%

  • October 4, 2018

Ghana’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) registered an impressive growth rate of 8.5 percent in 2017 from a rate of 3.5 percent in 2016, breaking the downward trend since 2011, while per capita growth increased from 1.4 percent in 2016 to 6.1 percent in 2017.

In 2017, the services sector, which represents more than half of GDP, registered a growth rate of 4.3 percent, compared to 5.7 percent in 2016, while industry, the second largest sector, recorded an increase of 16.7 percent in 2017, compared to a decrease of 0.5 in 2016.

For the agricultural sector, a growth rate of 8.4 percent was recorded in 2017, as against 3.0 percent in 2016.

These are contained in the State of the Ghanaian Economy Report, 2017, which was launched in Accra, on October 2, 2018.

Prof. Felix Ankomah Asante, Director, University Of Ghana’s Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research (ISSER) presented the Report which was launched by Nana Osei-Bonsu, Chief Executive Officer, Private Enterprise Foundation, and Chairman for the occasion.

The Report explains that the outstanding performance by the industrial sector in 2017 was attributable to the production in upstream oil and gas, and has little direct impact bearing on diversification of the Ghanaian economy based on value addition.

According to the Report, the end-of-year inflation rate in 2017 was 11.8 percent as against 15.4 percent in 2016, with the average annual inflation rate falling substantially from 17.5 percent in 2016 to 12.4 percent on 2017 and achieving the target rate.

Broad money supply, including foreign currency deposits, the Report says, grew by 16.7 percent in 2017 as against 22.0 percent in 2016.

The Report notes that a new medium-term national development framework—An Agenda for Jobs: Creating Prosperity and Equal Opportunity for All, 2018-2021 (First Step)—has been developed, and indicates that since many of the projects under the framework were initiated in 2017, it is too early to effectively assess progress.

However, the Report says it is anticipated that the four initiatives under the policy will expand employment across districts, increase the supply of secondary school graduates and strengthen local authorities financially.

The Report notes that implementation of the initiatives under the new development framework will require additional financial resources, with possible adverse implications for fiscal balance.

The chairman for the occasion, Nana Osei-Bonsu, stressed the need to address revenue shortages by reducing tax exemptions.

Nana Osei-Bonsu said Ghana’s future depended on proper and strategic planning, while on corruption, he said the citizenry had a responsibility to support government in fighting it.

ISSER is one of the three Research institutions at the University of Ghana, Legon. The other two are the Regional Institute for Population Studies and the Institute of African Studies.

Source: ISD (G.D. Zaney, Esq.)

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