Ghana’s economy shrinks further in 2015

Seth TerkperMore troubles await Ghana’s economy as it is expected to shrink further in size this year to about $36.6 billion from $38.5 billion in 2014, according to figures released by the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS).

Excluding oil, the economy is expected to reduce in size from $35.9 billion last year to $34.5 billion in 2015. This is due mainly to a weakening currency which has lost more than 20 percent in value to the US dollar this year as well as rising interest rates and inflation.

In cedi terms, the total value of goods and services produced within a year is however expected to increase in size from GH¢113.3 billion in 2014 to GH¢140.0 billion in 2015.

Already, the Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research (ISSER) of the University of Ghana has predicted a bleak future for the economy, as businesses suffer from high taxes and imbalances.

According to provisional estimates from the GSS, per capita income in dollar terms will also shrink from $1,426 last year to $1,325 in 2015. However, it was expected to go up from GH¢4,192 to GH¢5,016 in cedi terms.

The economy was also expected to grow by 4.1 percent this year though job opportunities from this growth are little.

In its State of the Ghanaian Economy Report, 2014, ISSER said Ghana’s continued falling growth appears to be in contrast with that of the global economy which actually improved slightly from 3.0 percent in 2013 to 3.4 percent in 2014. The implications are that growth of businesses will be slow while fewer jobs will be created and livelihood of people will also be affected.

According to the GSS estimates, industry will shockingly lead the growth of the economy in 2015, expanding by 9.1 percent followed by the services sector which will grow by 4.7 percent. Agriculture will however record no growth in 2015.

As a norm, the services sector will record the highest share of annual GDP of 54.1 percent, followed by industry with a share of 26.9 percent. Agriculture will record the least share of 19.0 percent.

Meanwhile, the Statistical Service says further revisions to these estimates will be carried out in December 2015.

For the second quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP) estimates, services recorded the highest share of 59.8 percent whilst industry and agriculture followed with 29.6 and 10.6 per cent respectively.

Agriculture however grew at -0.1 percent between April and June 2015. The livestock sub-sector however recorded the highest year-on-year growth rate of 13.4 per cent while the crops and cocoa sub-sector recorded the lowest growth rate of -5.6 per cent.

With regard to industry, it grew at an astonishingly 15.3 per cent in the second quarter of 2015. The construction sub-sector recorded the highest year-on-year quarterly GDP growth rate of 43.3 per cent, while the Electricity sub-sector recorded the lowest of -23.5 per cent.

For the second quarter of 2015, the Services sector recorded a year-on-year quarterly growth rate of 5.3 per cent. Finance and insurance sub-sector recorded the highest year-on-year quarterly GDP growth rate of 52.7 per cent while the transport and storage sub-sector recorded the lowest growth rate of -11.3 per cent.

The quarter-on-quarter seasonally adjusted GDP growth rate for the second quarter was 0.9 per cent. This means that the value of goods and services produced in the period grew by 0.9 per cent relative to the 1.0 per cent growth rate recorded in the first quarter of 2015.

The growth rate for GDP for 2014 was 4.0 per cent compared to 7.3 percent in 2013. This is consistent with the growth rate of 4.0 per cent for the GDP measured by the Production Approach released earlier in June 2015.

Consumption (households and government expenditure) grew by 5.3 per cent in 2014 compared to 7.4 percent in 2013.

Investment (gross fixed capital and changes in stocks) Expenditure grew by 3.3 per cent in 2014 compared to 7.3 per cent in 2013 and

Net exports of goods and services contracted by 42.3 percent in 2014 compared with an expansion of 21.3 per cent in 2013.

The Finder

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