Ghana is an average natural resource enriched country possessing industrial minerals, hydrocarbons and precious metals. It is an emerging designated digital economy with mixed economy hybridisation and an emerging market with 8.7% GDP growth in 2012. It has an economic plan target known as the “Ghana Vision 2020”. This plan envisions Ghana as the first African country to become a developed country between 2020 and 2029 and a newly industrialised country between 2030 and 2039.[clarification needed] This excludes fellow Group of 24 member and Sub-Saharan African country South Africa, which is a newly industrialised country. Ghana’s economy also has ties to the Chinese yuan renminbi along with Ghana’s vast gold reserves. In 2013, the Bank of Ghana began circulating the renminbi throughout Ghanaian state-owned banks and to the Ghana public as hard currency along with the national Ghana cedi for second national trade currency. Between 2012 and 2013, 37.9 percent of rural dwellers were experiencing poverty whereas only 10.6 percent of urban dwellers were. Urban areas hold greater opportunity for employment, particularly in informal trade, while nearly all (94 percent) of rural poor households participate in the agricultural sector.
The state-owned Volta River Authority and Ghana National Petroleum Corporation are the two major electricity producers. The Akosombo Dam, built on the Volta River in 1965, along with Bui Dam, Kpong Dam, and several other hydroelectric dams provide hydropower. In addition, the Government of Ghana has sought to build the second nuclear power plant in Africa.
The Ghana Stock Exchange is the 5th largest on continental Africa and 3rd largest in sub-saharan Africa with a market capitalisation of GH¢ 57.2 billion or CN¥ 180.4 billion in 2012 with the South Africa JSE Limited as first. The Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) was the 2nd best performing stock exchange in sub-saharan Africa in 2013.
Ghana also produces high-quality cocoa. It is the 2nd largest producer of cocoa globally, and is projected to become the world’s largest producer of cocoa in 2015.
Ghana is classified as a middle income country. Services account for 50% of GDP, followed by manufacturing (24.1%), extractive industries (5%), and taxes (20.9%).
The Ghana economy is an emerging digital-based mixed economy hybrid with an increasing primary manufacturing and export of digital technology goods along with assembling and exporting automobiles and ships, diverse resource rich exportation of industrial minerals, agricultural products primarily cocoa, petroleum and natural gas, and industries such as information and communications technology primarily via Ghana’s state digital technology corporation Rlg Communications which manufactures tablet computers with smartphones and various consumer electronics.
Petroleum and natural gas production
Jubilee oil field of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) and National Petroleum Authority located off the coast of the Western Region in Ghana in the South Atlantic Ocean.
Ghana produces and exports an abundance of hydrocarbons such as sweet crude oil and natural gas. The 100% state-owned filling station company of Ghana, Ghana Oil Company (GOIL) is the number 1 petroleum and gas filling station of Ghana and the 100% state-owned state oil company Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) oversees hydrocarbon exploration and production of Ghana’s entire petroleum and natural gas reserves. Ghana aims to further increase output of oil to 2.2 million barrels (350,000 m3) per day and gas to 34,000,000 cubic metres (1.2×109 cu ft) per day.
Ghana’s Jubilee Oilfield which contains up to 3 billion barrels (480,000,000 m3) of sweet crude oil was discovered in 2007, among the many other offshore and inland oilfields in Ghana. Ghana is believed to have up to 5 billion barrels (790,000,000 m3) to 7 billion barrels (1.1×109 m3) of petroleum in reserves, which is the fifth largest in Africa and the 21st to 25th largest proven reserves in the world. It also has up to 1.7×1011 cubic metres (6×1012 cu ft) of natural gas in reserves, which is the sixth largest in Africa and the 49th largest natural gas proven reserves in the world. Oil and gas exploration off Ghana’s eastern coast on the Gulf of Guinea is ongoing, and the amount of both crude oil and natural gas continues to increase. The Government of Ghana has drawn up plans to nationalise Ghana’s entire petroleum and natural gas reserves to increase government revenue.
Industrial minerals mining
Main article: Mining industry of Ghana
Known for its industrial minerals, Ghana is the world’s 7th largest producer of gold; producing over 102 metric tons of gold and the 10th largest producer of gold in the world in 2012; producing 89 metric tons of gold. Ghana is the 2nd largest producer of gold on the Africa continent behind South Africa. Ghana has the 9th largest reserves, and is the 9th largest producer, of diamonds in the world. Industrial minerals and exports from South Ghana are gold, silver, timber, diamonds, bauxite, and manganese. South Ghana also has great deposits of barite, basalt, clay, dolomite, feldspar, granite, gravel, gypsum, iron ore, kaolin, laterite, limestone, magnesite, marble, mica, phosphates, phosphorus, rocks, salts, sand, sandstone, silver, slate, talc, and uranium that are yet to be fully exploited. The Government of Ghana has drawn up plans to nationalise Ghana’s entire mining industry to increase government revenues.
A villa in East Ridge
The real estate and housing market of Ghana has become an important and strategic economic sector, particularly in the urban centres of south Ghana such as Accra, Kumasi, Sekondi-Takoradi and Tema. Kumasi is growing at a faster rate than Accra, and there is less competition in its real estate market. The gross rental income tax of Ghana is withheld at 10%, capital gains are taxed at 15% with a 5% gift tax imposed on the transfer of properties and Ghana’s real estate market is divided into 3 areas: public sector real estate development, emerging private sector real estate development, and private individuals. The activities of these 3 groups are facilitated by the Ghanaian banks and the primary mortgage market which has demonstrated enormous growth potential. Recent developments in the Ghanaian economy has given birth to a boom in the construction sector, including the housing and public housing sector generating and injecting billions of dollars annually into the Ghanaian economy. The real estate market investment perspective and attraction comes from Ghana’s tropical location and robust political stability. An increasing number of the Ghanaian populace are investing in properties and the Ghana government is empowering the private sector in the real estate direction.
Trade and exports
Ghana Export Treemap by Product (2014) from Harvard Atlas of Economic Complexity
In July 2013, International Enterprise Singapore opened its 38th global office in Accra, to develop trade and investment on logistics, oil and gas, aviation, transportation and consumer sectors. Singapore and Ghana also signed four bilateral agreements to promote public sector and private sector collaboration, as Ghana aims to predominantly shift its economic trade partnership to East Asia and Southeast Asia. The economic centre is IE Singapore’s second office in Africa, coming six months after opening in Johannesburg, South Africa in January 2013. Ghana’s labour force in 2008 totalled 11.5 million Ghanaian citizens. Tema Harbour is Africa’s largest manmade harbour and Takoradi Harbour along with Tema harbour in Ghana handles goods and exports for Ghana. They are also traffic junctions where goods are transhipped; the Tema harbour handles the majority of the nation’s export cargo and most of the country’s chief exports is shipped from Takoradi harbour. The Takoradi harbour and Tema harbour are operated by the state-owned Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority.
Electricity generation sector
Main article: Electricity sector in Ghana
Shortages of electricity have led to dumsor (persistent, irregular and unpredictable electric power outages), increasing the interest in renewables. Ghana plans to become a major regional exporter of electrical power using oil from the Jubilee oil field.
According to Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index of 2013, out of 177 countries, Ghana ranked 63rd with Cuba and Saudi Arabia. Ghana had a score of 46 on a scale where a 0–9 score means highly corrupt, and a 90–100 score means very clean. This was based on perceived levels of public sector corruption. Previously in 2012, the country ranked 64 and scored 45. Thus, Ghana’s public sector scored lower in 2013 than in 2012, according to CPI’s scores.
Local reports have claimed that Ghana loses US$4.5 billion annually from nominal gross domestic product (Nominal GDP) growth as a result of economic corruption and economic crime by the incumbent National Democratic Congress (NDC) government of Ghana led by John Dramani Mahama. It is also said Ghana has lost an additional US$2.5 billion from nominal gross domestic product (Nominal GDP) growth between the months of January 2013 to October 2013 through economic corrupt practices under the Mahama administration.
The incumbent president is however seen to be fighting corruption by some government members, and a fellow politician of an opposition party, after ordering investigations into scandals. Nonetheless others believe his actions are not sufficient in some cases.