Friday 23 February 2018
(Voice of America 07/10/13)
Only seven of the 53 African Union countries who pledged to commit at least 10 percent of their national budgets to investment in agriculture in 2003 have reached that goal. Aid organizations say that investment in agriculture is key to breaking the cycle of food insecurity and crisis in West Africa. As the declaration approaches its 10th anniversary on Wednesday, the aid groups are calling on AU countries to renew their commitment to the Maputo Declaration. In 2003, 53 African heads of state agreed to allocate at least 10 percent of their national budgets to investment in agriculture and livestock by July 2008. Ten years later, only seven countries - Burkina Faso, Niger, Guinea, Senegal, Mali, Malawi and Ethiopia -...
(The Globalnewsreel.com 07/10/13)
Against all expectations, Ghana has dipped low in its Non-Traditional Export (NTE) earnings for 2012. The country’s export earnings declined from US$ 2.423 billion in 2012 to US$2.364 billion in 2012, representing a drop by 2.43%. This drop is against the background of continual hikes in NTE earnings. In 2010 and 2011, the country exceeded targets by 12.3% and a whopping 33% respectively. The Acting CEO of the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), Gideon Quarcoo, attributed the downward experience to a drop in the average price levels of some key products such as cashew nuts (about 16%), cocoa paste (about 11%) and canned tuna (about 33%). The CEO added the lifting of the ban on exports of cocoa and its...
(The Globalnewsreel.com 07/10/13)
Some people call it load shedding while others call it power rationing. The truth, however, is that the country is virtually in power crisis. This has been so since 1998 when the country first experienced its major power crisis. Since then, power rationing or load shedding has almost become part of us and there appears to be no end in sight. This worrying development is making our so-called energy experts and their political counterparts appear clueless and their seeming incompetence is making the innocent citizens suffer. When the first major power crisis hit this country in 1998, the major excuse was that the volume of water that powered generators and turbines at the Akosombo Dam had subsided. Fifteen (15) years...
(Ventures-Africa 07/10/13)
VENTURES AFRICA – Shenzhen Energy Group (SEG), the mother company of Sunon Asogli — an Independent Power Producer in Ghana’s power sub-sector, has announced it is to build a 700MW power plant in the country. Mr Hong Can, a director at Shenzhen Energy Group, indicated that the coal-fired power plant will take 24-30 months to complete and also include the construction of a coal-port with approximately 50,000 tonnes berth. The project is projected to cost about $700 million and will need 2 million tonnes of coal per year to run when completed. According to Mr. Can, the coal for the project will be imported from South Africa. These disclosures were made when Mr Can and Sunon-Asogli officials paid a working...
(Vibe Ghana 07/10/13)
Ghana’s inflation rate rose to 11.4 per cent last June compare with 11.1 per cent in May, Dr Philomena Nyarko, acting Government Statistician, said on Wednesday. She said the rate was calculated for the second consecutive month, using the new food basket of 267 items, and the monthly change rate for June was 2.6 per cent. According to Dr Nyarko food inflation was up to 6.3 per cent in June, from 5.8 per cent in May while the non-food inflation was unchanged at 15.7 per cent. Housing, water, electricity, gas and other utilities recorded inflation of 17.4 per cent, clothing and footwear 17 per cent while the communications sub-group had the lowest inflation rate of 0.9 per cent. GNA
( 07/09/13)
Ghana has been ranked 67th in this year’s Global Food Security Index, a marginal improvement over last year’s ranking when it placed 68th out of 105 countries. This year’s Index expands on 25 previously identified food security indicators to determine how two new factors, political corruption and urbanisation, affect access to safe, nutritious and affordable food. “Corruption can impact food availability through distortions and inefficiencies in the uses of natural resources, as well as bottlenecks and inefficiencies in food distribution,” the report said. The report, which was commissioned by DuPont -- a developer of genetically modified crops, was developed by the Economic Intelligence Unit (EIU) to consider the underlying drivers of food security among some 105 countries worldwide. Ghana attained...
(Ghana Business News 07/09/13)
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has indicated that Ghana’s economy is at what it calls a critical stage of development. In a 113-page report published late June 2013, the IMF noted that despite Ghana reaching a lower middle-income status, the economy still relies heavily on agriculture and natural resources and most jobs are in the informal sector. According to the IMF staff report, Ghana’s concentration of exports on gold, cocoa and oil makes the economy “vulnerable to terms-of-trade shocks”. The Fund notes “Ghana is at a critical stage in its economic development”. The World Bank in July 2011 classified the economic status of Ghana as a low middle-income, moving from a lower income. This means the country has an average...
(The Globalnewsreel.com 07/09/13)
Ghana’s Finance Minister Seth Terkper says the country is not broke but however admits there are a few fiscal challenges to be scaled. He said the Ghana Revenue Authority is performing “very well” despite a few challenges which are being addressed through a series of revenue measures announced by President John Mahama a few weeks ago. “If we generate revenue and spend a higher than proportional [amount] to pay wages and interests, that does not mean that we are not deriving our revenues. We are deriving the revenues. GRA is doing well; it’s performing well even though it has its own challenges…but that by no means, means that we are not collecting enough revenues and therefore the nation is broke”,...
(Myjoyonline 07/09/13)
Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country and the continent’s largest frontier market on July 2, raised $1billion from the global capital markets in two Eurobond issues - a $500 million 5-year bond at a yield of 5.375 per cent and a $500 million 10-year bond with a yield of 6.625 per cent. The offering was four-times oversubscribed due to Nigeria’s strong fiscal position, structurally sound macroeconomic fundamentals and low debt-to-GDP ratios. Despite Nigeria’s success, other African countries such as Senegal, Kenya and Ghana who are looking to tap the increasingly volatile international debt markets for cash in coming months may be in for a rougher and more costly ride. Ghana unlike Nigeria has a budget deficit of almost 12 per cent...
(Vibe Ghana 07/09/13)
The National Executive Committee of the New Patriotic Party last Friday slapped a two-year ban on Charles Wereko-Brobby for exhibiting behaviour that put the party’s image into disrepute, the New Statesman newspaper reports. Dr Wereko-Brobby is also to write an apology letter to the party within one week for bringing the name of the party into disrepute. For the two years that his membership will be suspended, he is to further refrain from making any disparaging remarks about the party. The punishment was meted out after the party’s National Executive Committee received the report of the Disciplinary Committee of the party. The Statesman can confirm that the Disciplinary Committee recommended a one-year suspension, but the NEC deemed it as too...
( 07/09/13)
Mining companies in the country will begin a massive downsizing of their operations from next month as renewed pressure to cut down on cost heightens with falling gold prices. More than 3,500 permanent jobs will be lost in an industry that has enjoyed a decade long boom as falling gold prices and rising cost blight the industry. A highly placed source at the Ghana Chamber of Mines warns of imminent job losses if gold remains at current price levels of less than a US$1,200 an ounce. Gold prices, which at the beginning of April, was hovering around US$1,600 an ounce has now crashed to low record price of below US$1,200. “We are still compiling the figures as is being submitted...
( 07/09/13)
The Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) was on Monday advised to tax passengers GH¢10 each for the use of luggage trolleys at the airport to generate revenue for national development. Sam Ato Gaisie, President of the Entrepreneur Foundation of Ghana (EFG) who gave the advice cited the United States of America (US) and the United Kingdom (UK) as examples of countries that charged travelers for using the trolleys to move their luggage around the airport, stressing that the taxation could be employed in Ghana. Mr Gaisie said passengers are made to pay five dollars each in the US whilst in the UK a passenger pays two pounds. His suggestion adds to recent comments made to request Government to widen the...
(Ghana Business News 07/09/13)
Mr Joe Ghartey, former Minister of Justice and Attorney General, who appeared before the Accra Fast Track High Court said government did not violate any laws in signing the Vodafone agreement. Mr Ghartey said the Divestiture Implementation Committee Law (DIC) and the National Communication Authority (NCA) law were both not violated during the agreement signed for the sale of Ghana Telecom to Vodafone. In 2008 Government signed an agreement to off load 70 per cent shares of Ghana Telecom to Vodafone International B.V. He said the agreement in section 6 ‘1’ (11) talks about a NCA letter, confirming that the agreement did not breach the Authority’s Act, and that the NCA was the only body under the law to implement...
(Vibe Ghana 07/09/13)
Mr Joe Ghartey, former Minister of Justice and Attorney General, who appeared before the Accra Fast Track High Court said government did not violate any laws in signing the Vodafone agreement. Mr Ghartey said the Divestiture Implementation Committee Law (DIC) and the National Communication Authority (NCA) law were both not violated during the agreement signed for the sale of Ghana Telecom to Vodafone. In 2008 Government signed an agreement to off load 70 per cent shares of Ghana Telecom to Vodafone International B.V. He said the agreement in section 6 ‘1’ (11) talks about a NCA letter, confirming that the agreement did not breach the Authority’s Act, and that the NCA was the only body under the law to implement...
(The Africa Report 07/09/13)
Ghana's HIV prevalence rate has stabilised over the last five years, with latest figures indicating a lowly 1, 37 percent of the population is infected with the virus. The West African country has also recorded declines in the prevalence of the virus among key populations as well as significant reductions in new infections among the youth, pregnant women and children. According to the 2012 Sentinel Survey (HSS) and National Prevalence and Estimates report, an estimated 235,982 people out of whom 27,734 are children (11.8 per cent), are living with HIV and AIDS. There are also 7,991 new infections of which 852 are children between the ages of zero to 14 years. A total of 11,655 AIDS deaths, which include 1,620...
( 07/09/13)
Players in the mobile telephony services industry in the country have warned that the cost of telecom services could rise if Parliament goes ahead to pass the Communication Service Tax (CST) Amendment Bill currently before the House. The bill imposes a six per cent tax on interconnection, in addition to the existing surcharge of six cents per minute, which the government collects on international calls. According to the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications, the umbrella body of all the telecom players in the country, “already mobile network operators pay to the government 15 per cent VAT and NHIL on incoming international calls”. Besides, the chamber said the Ministry of Finance is considering a further five per cent stabilisation levy on telecommunication...
(Ghana Business News 07/09/13)
African airlines enjoyed nearly a 10% rise in traffic in May 2013 as global passenger growth trend continues, according to an industry report. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) says African airlines’ traffic climbed 9.8% in May which was the second highest among the regions. The report notes that African carriers are benefiting from a sustained increase in trade through developing links to Asia and the Middle East, as well as strong GDP growth in local economies, particularly in Western Africa. “Capacity rose 7.4% in May, raising load factor 1.4 percentage points to 66.2%,” said IATA’s passenger traffic report. In terms of air freight, African carriers grew just 0.2% in May, but growth trend, according to the airline association, was...
( 07/08/13)
Government’s rush to Parliament to slap additional taxes on communication service consumers under a certificate of urgency is a cheap way of raising revenue, which will harm everybody unnecessarily. Telecom operators pay about 40 percent of their total revenue as corporate taxes and levies, and the industry has been accounting for about a third of GDP growth. This year, Government has estimated that it will rake in GH¢150.8million from Communication Service Tax (CST), otherwise known as “Talk Tax”, which is a 6% tax billed to consumers of communication services. When the CST was introduced in 2008, it was fixed at an ad valorem rate of 6% on a one-minute call charge. In addition, an interconnectivity charge was added to raise...
(Ventures-Africa 07/08/13)
VENTURES AFRICA – Parliament in the West African country of Ghana on last Friday passed the Customs and Excise (Duties and other Taxes) Amendment) Bill, 2013 to re-impose a 20 percent import duty on mobile telephone handsets - mobile, cellular and satellite phones. The government says this tax is also meant to protect local manufacturers of mobile phone handsets and also increase government revenue. RLG Communications is Ghana’s foremost assembler of mobile phone handsets. The same tax rate was imposed on plastic products coming into the country. The government removed import duty on telephone sets a few years ago in a bid to reduce prices and to encourage usage. The Finance Committee of parliament, the sub-committee that introduced the bill,...
(Myjoyonline 07/08/13)
Businesses will by the end of this year have to set aside five percent of their profits as stabilization levy. This follows the approval of the levy by Parliament on Thursday. The levy would be applied on the profits of banks, financial institutions , mining firms, Telecom company and brewery firms. It would be applied for a period of 18 months. Government is hoping to raise 88 million Ghana cedis from the Stabilization Levy. But some businesses who would be affected by this tax have told Joy Business timing of the tax is unfortunate since most of them are going through some challenging times. Government in 2009 introduced the levy but was later abolished in 2011 after compliance from businesses...

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