An economist, Dr Jerry Motrphant has said the bad state of the country’s economy should not be blamed on the outbreak of Coronavirus in Ghana, disputing a claim President Nana Akufo-Addo made that the pandemic was responsible for the bad economic indicators.
The financial analyst said the country’s economy had already began crumbling before Ghana recorded her first case of COVID-19 in March last year.
Speaking to Prince Minkah on XYZ Tonighton TV XYZ Wednesday night, the analyst indicated that the massive borowing under the Akufo-Addo government should be blamed for the weak economy.
“There is no way borrowing is going to decline anytime soon,” Dr Morphant stated as he painted a gloomy picture of the economy this year.
Delivering the State of the Nation Address in parliament on Tuesday, President Akufo-Addo, among other things said, the country was on the right track and touted his achievements in various sectors of the economy as he blamed COVID-19 for the slow growth of the economy.
President Nana Akufo-Addo on Tuesday said the country’s Gross domestic product (GDP) will grow by five per cent (5%) by the end of 2021.
Akufo-Addo stated although the COVID-19 pandemic had affected the economic outlook of the country, his eceonomic recovery agenda will bring about some ease.
He said, among other things, that his government would lead a “rapid industrialisation” drive that will result in “a value added economy” which will be fuelled by one of his flagship programmes, the One District, One Factory (1D1F).
“We expect GDP growth to rebound strongly this year to nearly 5 percent; above the IMF’s 2021 January projection of 3.2 percent for sub-Saharan Africa for 2021,” the President said and announced 232 projects under the 1D1F are at various stages of completion which would contribute to boosting the industrialization sector.
He also expressed confidence the commencement of the coronavirus vaccine rollout will contribute to that.
“Government expects economic activity, which has already picked up, to do so even further following the ongoing vaccination exercise and the easing of restrictions put in place to curb the effects of the disease.”
But Dr Jerry Morphant said the government was not doing things right since unemployment had not been tackled head on due to “the lack of data” to showcase how dire the situation was under the ruling NPP administration.
He stated “the challenge is that the country borrows from the domestic market” which he said not a good step to reviving the economy.
Instead, he advised the government to look at using technology to boost the economy and explained that the importation of machinery to add value to raw materials in the country, which the government promised in opposition, should have been done long ago to create employment and also ensure that the funds generated from the industrial sector remain in the country.
He wondered why the country was not refining gold which is exported raw in large quantities from the country, adding that “I don’t see a macro economic stability soon”.