President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said the government, over the last two and a half years, has corrected the fundamentals of the Ghanaian economy, which, prior to his assumption of office, were completely in disarray.
He said "the fiscal deficit, which stood at 9.3% in 2016, has been brought down to 3.9% at the end of 2018. Our actions have resulted in the rapid growth of Ghana's economy, which, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), this year, will be the fastest growing economy in the world at a projected 8.8% (up from 3.6% in 2016)."
Speaking at the France-Ghana Business Forum on Tuesday, President Akufo-Addo said the continued stability of the macro-economy -- the Cedi; reduction in inflation from 15.4% in December 2016 to 9.5% in April 2019; reduction of lending rates, amongst others -- are examples of some of the steps that had been taken to grow the Ghanaian economy.
"In addition to these, a number of taxes, which were militating against businesses and business owners, have either been abolished or reduced," he added.
The President said, prior to 2017, the banking sector was characterized by several weakly capitalised banks, with balance sheets encumbered by a multitude of low performing loans, bad business models with poor governance practices, and, largely, non-existent central bank regulations.
"We took measures to sanitise the system, saved the deposits of some 1.5 million Ghanaians, their businesses and the people they employed, and also minimised job losses in the banking sector."
According to the March 2019 Banking Sector Report of the Bank of Ghana, "an assessment of the banking sector's performance during the first two months of 2019 showed a well-capitalized, profitable, liquid and stable sector with strong prospects for increased financial intermediation."
Indeed, at the end of the first quarter of 2019, the banking industry performance in total assets, total deposits and net loans and advances, all saw positive growth.
President Akufo-Addo told the gathering that all these had been done because the government believes in the primacy of the private sector and that it was working to enhance the prospects of a win-win environment for both the private sector and country; and create an environment where companies would not just survive, but actually, thrive.
"Mine is a government that believes in market principles and welcomes investors who want to work to promote the same and help build our economy.
And, above all, the interests and welfare of our people are our paramount concerns," the President noted.