Ghana’s GDP Drops To 69.8%


ken ofori atta

The increase in Gross Domestic Products (GDP), coupled with a slowdown in the rate of accumulating debts, has reduced the Debt-to-GDP ratio to 69.8% in 2017.

This represents a 3.5% drop in the 73.3% Debt-to-GDP ratio recorded in 2016.

This reflects a slowdown in the rate of external debt accumulation, as well as higher GDP growth rate.
The GDP growth increased from 3.6% in 2016 to some 6.6% in 2017.

Debt accumulation rate drops to 16%
On the other hand, the rate of debt accumulation dropped from about 36% to 16% in 2017.

These two indicators helped to reduce the debt to GDP to 69.8%, despite an increase in the absolute figure for the total public debt.

Profiling of debts
Government implemented policies to lengthen the maturity profile of domestic debt and also built liquidity in some benchmarks bonds to support secondary market trading, which deepened domestic debt market.


Total public debt hits GH¢142.5bn in 2017
The latest Bank of Ghana (BoG) summary of Economic and Financial Data puts Ghana’s total public debt stock at GH¢142.5 billion as of the end of 2017.

External debt constitutes 53.2%
Of this amount, the external debt constitutes 53.2%, with 46.8% being domestic debt.
GH¢19.9bn added to public debt in 2017
This means GH¢19.9 billion was added to the total public debt in 2017 as the government inherited GH¢122.6 billion as of the end of 2016.

GH¢75.8bn external debt (37.1% Debt-to-GDP ratio)
According to the data, external debt as of the end of December 2017 stood at $17.2 million, translating into GH¢75.8 billion.

This represents 37.1% Debt-to-GDP ratio as of December 2017.
GH¢66.7bn domestic debt (32.7% Debt-to-GDP ratio)
Similarly, the domestic component of the public debt stood at GH¢66.7 billion, representing a Debt-to-GDP ratio of 32.7 per cent.

This means that the country may have carried out more external borrowings over that period.
Over $1bn balance of payment surplus

Ghana’s balance of payment recorded a surplus of over $1 billion ($1,067.6 million), representing 2.4% of GDP, as against $247 million in 2016, representing 0.6% of GDP.

4.5 Months of import cover
As a result, the Gross International Reserves increased to $7.6 billion, providing four-and-half months of import cover.

Exports rake in $13.7 billion
In 2017, exports hit $13.7 billion ($13,751.9 million) as against imports totalling $12.6 billion ($12,684.3 million).

Fiscal balance recorded a deficit of 6%
The fiscal balance recorded a deficit of 6% of GDP as against a target of 6.3% and an outturn of 9.3% in 2016.

0.7% Primary balance recorded
For the first in a decade, the primary balance also recorded 0.7% of GDP.

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