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Sep 22, 2011

Ghana`s economy will grow by 16.3%

Many international financial institutions continue to paint a positive outlook for Ghana’s economy, citing improved macro-stability, high commodity prices and the onset of the commercial production of oil.

The latest bullish assessment and positive outlook for the country’s economy comes from the report of Standard Bank, parent company of Stanbic Bank Ghana, which predicted a strong 16.3 per cent growth for 2011.

Mr. Stephen Bailey-Smith, Head of Africa Research, Standard Bank, said in the bank’s African Markets research report that the Ghanaian economy was the fastest growing in the world.

The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank in their recent assessment also painted a positive outlook for the Ghanaian economy.

He said the country’s fiscal and monetary policy continued to promote a relatively stable backdrop for future growth.

“We see growth moderating to an annual average of 16.3 in 2011, easing further to around 8.25 per cent in 2012,” he said.

Mr. Bailey-Smith said provisional figures for the first quarter of 2011, reveals that Ghana's real Gross Domestic Product grew 23.0 per cent from 9.5 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2011, making it the fastest growing economy in the world.

In an interview with Mr. Alhassan Andani, Managing Director of Stanbic Bank, to throw more light on the report, he said Ghana was still in a position to register strong economic growth without the oil sector, particularly in construction services as large infrastructure projects were being undertaken.

“The massive construction works going on around the country signal the level of Ghana's development,” he said, adding that the country was able to chalk this remarkable economic feat because of the independence of institutions such as the judiciary, Bank of Ghana and the media.

Mr. Andani said countries which had seen economic development did it on the back of strong and independent institutions which, in the long run, ensures investor confidence, and “Ghana has built these institutions over the years and we are beginning to see the results”.

The Ghanaian economy, he said, benefited from strong rebound of both volumes and prices of Ghana’s major export commodities such as gold and cocoa.

He said gold was still the store of value, with the price expected to rise as it did in 2010 and 2009 when the global economy took a down turn.

“Countries such as Brazil, Russia, India and China, and other emerging economies will demand minerals such as diamonds, manganese and bauxite, which Ghana is blessed with. With the prices of these minerals going up, Ghana is sure to rake a lot of revenue from that sector,” he said.

Source: Standard Bank