Professor John Gatsi, who teaches finance at the University of Cape Coast (UCC), has urged the government to develop policies that target products that can be produced effectively in Ghana to boost production and discourage imports.
He believes that supporting local production of goods rather than allowing the nation to become a net importer of staple foodstuffs will be most beneficial to the government.
He pointed out that Ghana’s export, manufacturing, and even import sectors are all plagued by a slew of issues as a result of successive governments’ inability to adequately present a policy framework that addresses the situation.
“It is not merely about benchmark, we have myriads of problems affecting the export sector, the manufacturing sector, and even the things that we import into the country,” he stated on JoyNews’ PM Express.
“I believe that importing intermediate goods, which will undergo the value addition process, create jobs, and establish the framework for revenue generation, is valuable for a nation.That is the right thing for us to do.
“However, over time, the quantity of fundamental goods that our nation is able to produce has been exchanged for imports from other nations, and this number continues to rise.The statistics that come from the statistical service also show that we are now becoming net importers of the majority of our staples.
“So this is the area in which we need to develop policy to address them; therefore, it’s not just one issue; it’s a myriad of issues,” the author states.
Professor Gatsi suggested a practical solution to Ghana’s import dependency issue, which also led to issues with inflation and exchange rates. Before moving on to other products, the government should start with easy-to-make goods.
Now, inflation and the exchange rate, for instance, are related.Now, if you want to import a wide range of items, the easiest way to do so is to focus on those that everyone in elementary school knows you can produce efficiently. You should start by encouraging them to produce more and add value.
“However, as we speak, it is not entirely clear whether we appreciate the disaggregation of statistical service data for us to see that these are the problem areas, begin to target them, and implement the policy.Therefore, I believe our policies ought to target the issues we face, which I believe we will be able to resolve over time,” he stated.
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