Economy Growing Stronger – Akufo-Addo
The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, says Ghana’s macro-economy has grown stronger over the last 10 months, the period of stay of his government in office, as key economic indicators have improved significantly, as opposed to what was inherited from the previous administration.
According to President Akufo-Addo, “we have begun to work on the fundamentals of the economy, because we believe that an improved macro-economy is a fundamental requirement for stimulating the investments we need for the significant expansion and growth of the national economy, and the generation of wealth and jobs.
It is for this reason, the President indicated, that his government has begun putting in place the measures that will improve the living conditions of the Ghanaian people. These measures, he said, have resulted in a stronger macro-economy.
“The interventions, initiated by Government, over the last 10 months, have ensured that the fiscal deficit, which stood at 9.5% at the end of 2016, has been reduced to 6.3% this year. Inflation, within the same period, has declined from 15.4% to 11.6%. Our economy has grown from 3.3% last year, the lowest in 22 years, to 7.9% this year,” the President said.
He continued, “Interest rates are declining, and we are now witnessing a more stable cedi, our national currency. The Monetary Policy Rate by the Bank of Ghana declined by 450 basis points from 25.5% in January to 21% in September. That has contributed to the downward trend of interest rates, with a sharp decline in the 91-day and 182-day Treasury Bill Rates.”
President Akufo-Addo made this known on Saturday, 25th November, 2017, when he delivered a speech at the maiden edition of the Chamber Business Awards, of the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce, held at the Banquet Hall of the State House, in Accra.
The President noted that importance of Chambers of Commerce and Industry to socio-economic development across the world is well established.
GNCC to be commended
Following the legislative backing of the activities of the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry, through Legislative Instrument, L.I. 611, of 11th December, 1968, President Akufo-Addo noted that the Chamber has shown strong leadership in promoting and protecting commercial and industrial interests in the country.
“Successive governments have worked with the Chamber to address private sector concerns for the overall growth of the Ghanaian economy. My government will not be an exception!” he said.
President Akufo-Addo noted that the Chamber has been a key participant, during his Presidency, in several business meetings undertaken during the visits of some foreign Heads of State to Ghana.
“Together with the General Confederation of Moroccan Enterprises (CGEM), for example, a Ghana-Morocco Economic Meeting, which preceded the state visit of the King of Morocco, His Majesty King Mohamed VI, was held. This brought together over two hundred investors from both countries, resulting in the signing of over fifteen MoUs, in areas of mutual interest,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo noted, again, that during the visit of Her Excellency Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, President of the Republic of Malta, another high-level business forum was organized on 26th July, 2017, by the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry, together with the Malta Chamber of Commerce Enterprise and Industry, to strengthen and deepen bilateral trade and investment relations between the two countries.
The President also commended the Chamber for the lead role it is playing in the West Africa Sealink project, which aims to enhance intra-ECOWAS trade.
“It is vital for the prosperity and progress of the peoples of West Africa that we increase the volumes of trade amongst countries in the Region. Strong regional transportation networks will facilitate the realisation of this objective,” he added.
President Akufo-Addo, assured the business community that his government is fully committed to transforming Ghana’s economy, and leading the country into the new digital age.
The President stated that it is for this reason that his administration has introduced the e-business registration system, paperless port clearance system, digital addressing system, mobile interoperability system, and the national identification system, to ease the cost of doing business in the country, and generate greater efficiency.
He also assured that “as we go online, there are legitimate concerns about cyberspace threats, and I wish to underline Government’s efforts and commitment to secure our cyberspace.”
Having established the National Cyber Security Secretariat to implement Ghana’s National Cyber Security Policy and Strategy, the President added that he has also signed the African Union treaty on Cyber Security and Personal Data Protection, stressing that “all these measures are being put in place to secure the country’s cyberspace, and protect personal and business data.”
President Akufo-Addo noted also that the success or otherwise of his administration will be judged largely on his government’s record of job creation.
“It is for this reason that my government supports initiatives that will unleash the energies of business people, and stimulate the entrepreneurial potential of the Ghanaian. My view is clear. It is the private sector that can create the needed job opportunities for the people of our country, and I am confident that the Ghanaian private sector will rise to the challenge,” he said.
The President continued, “My government, on its part, will continue to build an enabling environment to provide the private sector with the needed catalyst to operate profitably, grow and remain internationally competitive.”