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Despite Growth, Ghana Jobless Rate Rising

Despite Growth, Ghana Jobless Rate RisingDespite Growth, Ghana Jobless Rate Rising

The rate of unemployment in Ghana continues to increase despite the significant economic growth recorded over the last 12 months, as low absorption sectors such as mining, oil and gas, and financial intermediation drive growth.

Prof. William Baah-Boateng of the Department of Economics, University of Ghana said: “From the demand side, we realize that the country is not generating sufficient jobs to absorb the rising number of unemployed youth into the labor market every year,” AllAfrica reported.

 “We’ve been growing; we grew at 14% in 2011. Growth came down, but in 2017 growth went up beyond 7%. That means we are picking up again. But you also have to look at the source of growth.”

Speaking at the Ghana Policy Dialogue on job-creation for the youth, organized by the Africa Center for Economic Transformation, he noted that attention must be paid to the agriculture, manufacturing and tourism sectors to create more jobs.

“We need to look at agriculture, manufacturing and tourism. Research has shown that these are the activities or sectors that have the potential of generating a high level of employment. We need to sit down and plan well,” he explained.

Manufacturing and agriculture, known to have high labor absorption, are among the poorest-performing sectors in the economy–with the latter recording a growth of 4.3% in the 2018 budget statement.

In contrast, the extractive sector (mining, oil and gas) and financial intermediation–considered to have low absorption–have been the key drivers of growth, culminating in low employment response to economic growth in the country.

Oil, in particular, accounted for 3.8% of overall gross domestic product growth between January and June 2017.

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