The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), Afua Asabea Asare, has announced that the earnings on non-traditional export commodities in Ghana have increased from the 2.846 billion dollars recorded in 2020 to 3.330 billion dollars in 2021.
This, according to her, represents a 17 per cent rise in revenue derived from non-traditional export commodities in the country.
The CEO of GEPA made the disclosure yesterday during the launch of the report on analysis of the 2021 non-traditional export statistics at the Information Ministry.
She said the rise in the country’s export for 2021 showed that the country is gradually making progress in its efforts to strengthen export diversification.
“Non-traditional export earnings for the period under review (January to December 2021) amounted to US$3.330 billion, reflecting an increase of about 17% over 2020 earnings of US$ 2.846 billion. Over the last five years (2017 to 2021), Ghana’s Non-Traditional Exports (NTEs) grew at an annual average rate of 7.07% and contributed 22.62% to the total national merchandise exports of Ghana in 2021,” she pointed out.
According to her, the COVID-19 pandemic affected export earnings for non-traditional export commodities, but its impact was quickly brought under control as evidenced by the 17 per cent recorded.
“The impressive showing of the non-traditional export sector in 2021, over 2020, was due to a general increase in demand for major processed and semi-processed non-tradition export products, expansions of and optimum running of installed capacities of some major companies.
“There was also exportation by some new One District One Factory (1D1F) export-oriented companies, adherence to protocols of the ECOWAS Trade Liberalization Scheme (ETLS) by most member states, and relentless trade facilitation efforts by the GEPA under the auspices of the Ministry of Trade and Industry,” she explained.
A Deputy Trade and Industry Minister, Herbert Krapa, attributed the growth in earnings to the implementation of the National Export Development Strategy that was launched in 2020.
In his view, government took a bold, strategic decision to transform the structure of the economy from a raw commodity export economy to a manufacturing economy backed by the policy document.
He, however, noted that Ghana had historically exported mainly raw commodities, which had consistently fetched the country low prices and insufficient foreign exchange revenues.
“Meanwhile, in destination markets, considerable wealth and jobs are created by adding value to the raw materials we produce here in Ghana. The irony is how we have to buy back these finished products, at high prices, with hard-earned foreign currency,” he stated.
Breaking this cycle, he stressed, government took a bold, strategic decision to transform the structure of the economy from a raw commodity export-based one to a manufacturing industrial export-driven economy.
“This was backed with the launch of the policy document. The rise in the country’s export earnings is as a result of government’s policies and flagship programmes, with a strong emphasis on value addition and employment development,” he added.