The state of Ghana’s economy and whether the government could be trusted to put it in a better shape in the days ahead had been a source of concern to development partners, global businesses, investors and all well-meaning Ghanaians.
The concern, which began brewing naturally during the COVID-19 pandemic, heightened when growth slumped, understandably, from the impressive post-IMF programme scores.
It appears that, today, the feat that saw a robust restructuring and consequent redemption from an IMF programme to an appreciable growth is being rubbished as if nothing good happened.
It is more discouraging that even in the light of the current 5.4 percent growth for 2021, we are still being infected by ‘opponents of progress’ with the disease called doom. At least, that was the picture the last flagbearer of the NDC and former President gave when he equated being at crossroads with being doomed.
That the Covid-19 pandemic and, lately, the Russian-Ukraine conflict have combined to put governments across the globe to crucial tests cannot be denied.
This is affirmed by the development community, global businesses, financial analysts and investors, who are all urging the government to do more, if it can sustain its record as a force, at least, in West Africa.
As we can all see on the ground, it is a distressing situation that demands more and more courage by the day. And nobody has denied that.
Last week, the European Union Ambassador to Ghana, Irchad Razaaly, admitted the challenges, just like the World Bank, Moody’s or Fitch Solutions had previously done.
It is therefore no surprise if that fact finds resonance on the political landscape in the country.
The EU Ambassador, in a meeting with Editors, however, explained why there is hope for Ghana and why we can get out of the worrying situation.
He was particularly happy that we have redeemed ourselves as a credible nation, with decently-enhanced financial systems that are not attractive to international fraud, including money-laundering.
That has resulted in Ghana’s name being removed from the EU’s Money Laundering List. The new image immediately puts Ghana on a pedestal of access to enhanced partnerships. This provides opportunities for more investment to come into the country, with possibilities of spurring industrial growth and creation of jobs.
Like the EU Ambassador rightly acknowledged, resilient structures have been created by the government that will support steady recovery and further accelerate growth. That, in addition, is an incentive for industrial growth and expansion with job creation benefits.
But the EU Ambassador made a basic analysis that should put to rest whether or not Ghana could bounce back. The fact is that after the COVID-19 slump of 0.4 growth, Ghana rose to the occasion with a 5.4 percent growth, shocking the business and development communities which had predicted a lower rate.
The logic here is that with the easing of the global pressures and a more committed digitalisation programme across our strategic sectors, growth would accelerate, and attract more partnerships, as global confidence in the economy is restored.
Fortunately for Ghana, it has not been abandoned by its partners in its commitment to prove a point in good governance and development. In the midst of the storm, they have stood by the country because the government has been credible and transparent in its relations with its development partners and multilateral agencies.
As any intelligent observer would admit, our current challenges should elicit in us opportunities towards more commitment to surmount the hurdles in moving forward, and riding the waves of the challenges to record better and better growth in the years ahead. But that involves sacrifices we should be collectively willing to make.
Again, this is what leadership is all about. And happily, by the records of the two main parties in the country, the NPP has proven to be better managers of the economy, especially in periods following serious crisis. We can therefore be rest assured that with the current leadership, the country is capable of surmounting the challenges.