GHANA HAS A STABLE AND DEMOCRATIC POLITICAL ENVIRONMENT
Ghana is one of the most stable democracies in Africa and has not recorded any interruption to democratic rule since 1992. Ghana is a key entry point into West Africa due to its peaceful and stable political environment. Ghana has held free and fair multiparty elections since 1992 and has undergone peaceful transitions of power between the two dominant political parties. Parliamentary and Presidential elections are held every four years in accordance with the 1992 Constitution of Ghana.
Ghana has three branches of government, the Executive, the Legislature and the Judiciary. The Executive is headed by the President of the Republic, who doubles as the Head of State and the Head of Government. The Vice-President and a Cabinet assist the President. Ghana's legislature officially called the Parliament of Ghana, is a unicameral legislative body with 275 members. Ghana's Parliament, in addition to making laws, exercises oversight over the other branches of government. The Judiciary of Ghana consists of the Superior Courts of Judicature, the lower courts, and other administrative tribunals. The Supreme Court of Ghana is the highest judicial body in the country. The 1992 Constitution of Ghana guarantees the independence of Ghana's judiciary.
Ghana has an estimated population of 32 million people and is divided into 16 administrative regions. The largest of these regions are the Greater Accra region, with an estimated population of 5.5 million people, and the Ashanti Region, with an estimated population of 5.4 million people. Ghana is further subdivided into 261 administrative districts. These administrative districts are administered by Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies headed by Chief Executives. Ghana's free and vibrant media consistently ranks competitively in the World Press Freedom Index.
GHANA IS ONE OF THE LARGEST ECONOMIES IN WEST AFRICA
Ghana has the second largest economy in West Africa, with an estimated GDP of US$217 billion based on PPP. The services sector in Ghana accounts for 57.2 per cent of GDP. This is followed by industry which accounts for 24 per cent of GDP, and agriculture which accounts for 18.3 per cent of the country's GDP.
Ghana's dynamic financial system comprises banking, insurance, and capital markets. Ghana's Central Bank, the Bank of Ghana, was founded in 1957 and is responsible for regulating the country's banks and other non-banking financial institutions. The Bank of Ghana is also responsible for monetary policy. There are currently 23 commercial banks, 25 savings and loans companies and 11 finance houses licensed to operate in the country. In addition, Ghana has 132 licensed deposit-taking microfinance institutions and 147 rural and community banks. The Fintech industry has thrived in recent years. There are currently 46 licensed Payment Service Providers (PSPs) in Ghana. The Electronic Money and Payment industry had a total transaction value of GHS385 billion in 2021. There are approximately 37.5 million E-money accounts in Ghana.
The National Insurance Commission of Ghana (NIC) regulates the insurance sector. There are currently 52 insurance companies licensed to operate by the NIC. Of these 52 companies, 29 provide only non-life insurance services, 20 provide life insurance services, and 3 provide reinsurance services. Ninety-eight companies are licensed to provide insurance and reinsurance brokerage services.
The Securities and Exchange Commission regulates the securities industry in Ghana. The Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) is the only stock exchange in operation in Ghana. The GSE additionally operates the Ghana Fixed Income Market (GFIM), which facilitates secondary trading of all fixed-income and other securities. The Ghana Alternative Market (GAX) is an equity finance program to assist start-ups and SMEs in raising capital and expanding growth.
Manufacturing accounts for around 92 per cent of Ghana's industrial enterprises. Manufacturing activities are generally regulated by the Ministry of Trade and Industry and other relevant government agencies such as the Ghana Standards Authority, the Food and Drugs Authority and the Ghana Free Zones Authority. The manufacturing industry in Ghana employs about 18.6% of the country's workforce. Ghana's most important manufacturing industries include textile and garment manufacturing, wood processing, pharmaceutical products manufacturing, metal processing, cement and chemical production, aluminum smelting and the refinery of crude oil and gas.
Ghana's Information Communication Technology (ICT) Sector contributes to economic growth by adding approximately 5% to the country's overall GDP. The ICT sector is estimated to grow to a projected $5 billion by the end of 2030. Ghana's ICT sector comprises software development companies, internet, and telecommunication service providers. The Ministry of Communications and Digitalization, the National Communications Authority and the Ghana Data Protection Agency are the primary regulators of this sector. The telecommunications industry is competitive with four major network operators. As of 2021, Ghana's total number of mobile voice subscribers was estimated to be 40.5 million, far outweighing the country's population. For mobile data subscriptions, there were 23.4 million subscribers as of 2021.
Ghana has a vibrant power generation sector, with private and public companies actively participating. Ghana's power generation consists primarily of hydro and thermal sources. In 2021 hydropower generation accounted for 34.1% of power generation in the country, with an installed capacity of 1,584 MW. There are three hydroelectric dams in Ghana. Thermal energy accounts for 65.3% of power generation with an installed capacity of 3,753 MW. There are currently 15 thermal plants in Ghana. Thermal fuel sources used in Ghana include Natural Gas, Liquid Gas, Diesel, Crude Oil and Heavy Fuel Oil. Other renewable sources of power generation in Ghana include solar and bioenergy. These other renewable sources account for 0.55% of the total power generated. 90% of the population in Ghana has access to electricity. This is one of the highest electrification rates on the African continent.
Ghana's agriculture sector is dominated by smallholder farmers who predominantly produce crops. 33% of Ghana's workforce is directly employed in the agriculture sector. The regulators of this sector include the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture and various agencies under these government ministries. Ghana's agricultural produce is categorized into four sub-sectors.
The first subsector is Crops. Crops are further classified into industrial crops, which include Cocoa, oil palm, coconut, coffee cashew and rubber. Ghana is the second largest producer of Cocoa in the world. The second category of crops produced in Ghana is starchy staples, cereals, and legumes, which include cassava, cocoyam, yam, plantain, millet and groundnut. The third category of crops produced in Ghana is fruits and vegetables, which include banana, pineapple, citrus, mango, pepper, tomato, eggplant, onion, and pawpaw.
The second subsector is livestock production. Ghana produces in large proportions poultry, including chicken, duck, and turkey. In addition, Ghana also produces cattle, sheep, goats, and pigs.
The third subsector is fisheries and aquaculture. Fish accounts for 60% of Ghana's protein requirements. Marine fishing accounts for a significant part of Ghana's fish supply.
The fourth agricultural subsector is Forestry and logging. Ghana has about 8 million hectares of forested land. Of this, 7.7 million hectares are primary forests, and 290,000 hectares are planted forests. In addition, several companies engage in the export of primary timber billets.
GHANA IS ENRICHED WITH NATURAL RESOURCES
Ghana is endowed with numerous natural resources and was the largest producer of Gold in Africa and the 6th largest producer globally in 2021. Other major minerals Ghana has in abundance include bauxite, gold, diamonds, manganese, iron ore and granite deposits. Recently, significant commercial quantities of Lithium amounting to 30.1 million tonnes have been discovered in Ghana, with companies starting production. Whiles non-Ghanaians are allowed to engage in large-scale mining, mining on a small scale is exclusively reserved for Ghanaian nationals. Government agencies responsible for mining regulation include the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, the Minerals Commission, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Lands Commission.
Ghana also has significant oil and gas reserves, with some estimated 5 billion to 7 billion barrels of oil untapped. The upstream petroleum sector is regulated by the Petroleum Commission, which manages and coordinates all activities in the upstream petroleum industry. The National Petroleum Authority regulates the downstream petroleum sector. There are several oil marketing companies operating in Ghana.
GHANA IS ONE OF THE TOP INVESTMENT DESTINATIONS IN AFRICA
Ghana is one of the best places to do business in Africa, according to the World Bank's Ease of Doing Business Report and is the most resilient economy in West Africa, according to EY's Africa Attractiveness Report. There has been an average of US$2.7 billion in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) from 2017 to 2021. In 2020, Ghana recorded one of the highest inflows of FDI in West Africa in the sum of GHS2.65 billion. Ghana's government has introduced various incentives to attract FDI and to ensure an enabling business environment. These incentives include interest subsidies, the provision of industrial parks tax holidays and rebates.
Ghana also has a youthful population, with 67% of the people between the ages of 15 to 64 years. The current literacy rate for citizens is around 70%. Businesses in Ghana can access a wide pool of skilled and trainable labour for the most competitive minimum wages. Ghana also has a high degree of personal safety, and the people are hospitable.
Ghana also hosts the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat. The AfCFTA promises a broader and deeper economic integration across the African Continent and would boost trade, attract investment provide jobs and reduce poverty.
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