President John Dramani Mahama has blamed recent economic challenges on the implementation of the Single Spine Salary Structure and the prolonged unstable power supply.
He says government has already taken all the tough economic decisions in the last three years and now the macro economy is therefore projected to be very resilient and robust with no new tough measures from next year.
According to President Mahama, Ghana’s Gross Domestic Product, (GDP), is also projected to grow from a minimum of eight per cent with the national deficit also expected to reduce to about four per cent.
President Mahama was speaking in an exclusive interview with GBC’s Garden City Radio in Kumasi.
President Mahama likened Ghana’s current economic situation to the proverbial ‘suffer to gain’ phenomenon, where one must necessarily swallow bitter pills so as to recover from a sickness.
He therefore appealed to the citizens to bear with government as there is light at the end of the tunnel.
President Mahama disclosed also that government will not introduce any new taxes. Rather, there will be more tax incentives for investors, with priority to Ghanaians.
He announced also that his next government will increase the threshold of VAT for small and medium scale enterprises from the present nine thousand Ghana Cedis to 110 thousand Ghana Cedis per annum.
This means that any entrepreneur whose annual profit is below the thresh hold will not pay VAT.
President Mahama assured that government will continue to give priority attention to Ghanaian construction firms in the award of road contracts so as to check the continuous repatriation of money by foreign contractors.
Touching on job creation, President Mahama disclosed that plans have been made for the employment of 400 thousand youth under the Youth Employment Agency from next year.
Already, about 60 thousand out the projected 100 thousand unemployed youth have been engaged by the Agency this year.
He said the sod will be cut very soon for the expansion of the Tema Port project that would also create employment for about seven thousand more people.
President Mahama noted that currently, there are about 600 thousand people on government’s payroll saying that government cannot employ huge numbers.
It is for this reason that the appropriate environment is being created to motivate the private sector to expand to create more employment opportunities.
He said the job market is now tilting in favour of university products with expertise in technicians and technical-oriented people.
This is what has influenced the conversion of the Polytechnics into Technical Universities to train such critical human resources and urged those universities to focus on their core mandates so as to achieve the objectives set for them.