Economy grows by 8.5% in 2017 …against a target of 6.3%, highest in 6yrs

The economy grew by 8.5 percent in 2017 as against a 6.3percent target – the highest since 2012 when it grew by 9.3 percent, figures released by the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) for quarter four of 2017 have shown.

Economic growth has remained under 8 percent since 2013, recording 7.3 in that year then plummeting to 4 percent in 2014, 3.8 percent in 2015 and 3.7 percent in 2016.

Translated into monetary value, the country’s economy was worth some GH₵205.5billion in 2017.

On quarterly basis, the economy grew by 8.1 percent in Q4 of 2017 compared to 4.5 percent recorded in the same period of the previous year.

In monetary terms the country’s economy (including oil), when adjusted to inflation, grew by some GH₵56.3 billion compared to Q4 of 2016 when it grew by GH₵47.3billion.

The industrial sector toppled the other two sectors as it grew by 17.5 percent, largely anchored by growth in the mining and quarrying subsector which recorded 43.9 percent growth.

The manufacturing sector, however, continued its disappointing performance as it grew by a measly 1.3 percent.

The agriculture sector followed with 8.5 percent growth, with the crops subsector leading with 9.7 percent. The forestry and logging subsector, however, recorded the least growth of 3 percent.

The services sector also grew, by 3.4 percent, with health and social works growing by 24.2 percent followed by education with 13.1 percent. Public administration, defence and social security however contracted with -4 percent.

In terms of contribution to GDP, the services sector maintained its dominance as it grew by 52.3 percent, whereas agriculture contributed 22.9 percent and industry 24.8 percent.

Commenting on the main drivers of the phenomenal growth, Acting Government Statistician Baah Wadieh mentioned the oil and gas subsector as the main contributor.

“The mining and quarrying subsector recorded growth of 43.9 percent, and out of this oil and gas recorded a growth of 80.4 percent,” he said.

This is significant, because in Q4 of 2016 the mining and quarrying subsector grew by just 8.9 percent.

Boosting the subsector’s growth was the Sankofa Gye Nyame oilfield, which was commissioned in January 2017.

The field is expected to produce 30,000 barrels of oil per day and 180 million cubic feet of gas.

The project is estimated to rake in revenue of US$11.115billion to the state over the 18-year OCTP project-life.