Ghana’s government statistician, Prof. Samuel Kobina Annim, is asking for more effort in boosting productivity in Ghana.

According to him, the country is vulnerable looking at how the Russian-Ukraine War has impacted the country’s inflation and the economy in general.

Ghana’s rate of inflation is currently at 23.4 percent, and it has attracted a lot of concerns, with one of the chief concerns being the implications of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Speaking at his inaugural lecture at the University of Cape Coast on ‘Data-policy Transitions: perspectives of economic variables’, the economist stated that the country would have been in much deeper trouble than it finds itself now if Russia had invaded China.

He explains that the concerns with the inflation data are mainly because the focus is the volume of imports that Ghana receives coupled with the reliance on commodities that the country relies on only one country for.

Ghana would have been in much deeper trouble if Russia had invaded China – Government Statistician
Government Statistician with his wife and children at the inaugural lecture

“But once we look at this data and we look at what we are getting from Russia and Ukraine, which is in the 5th or the 6th position, and I ask myself, ‘Where will our inflation be if Russia had invaded China?’” he asked.

The professor of economics posited that the happenings clearly give a sense of how vulnerable the country is.

Ghana would have been in much deeper trouble if Russia had invaded China – Government Statistician
Government Statistician , Professor Samuel Kobina Annim

“Our vulnerability is further deepened when you look at trade vulnerability not from a value point of view but for commodities that we rely on only one country for,” he stated.

He added, “So, for commodities that we rely on only one country for, China constitutes 22.4 percent of it, with 15 percent coming from India.”

The inaugural lecture on “Data-Policy Transitions: Perspectives of Economic Variables” is the second in a three-part series that commenced with a lecture on “Conceptualisation of National Policies: Issues of Capacity and Practice” at Central University in April and will conclude with a lecture on “Estimations and National Policies: Perspectives of Economic Variables”.

Ghana would have been in much deeper trouble if Russia had invaded China – Government Statistician

Professor Annim’s research achievements have mainly been in microfinance, with the central aim of investigating the impact of the development paradigm that received much attention in the first decade of the 21st century. While the impact has been proven scientifically to an extent, Prof. Annim demonstrated the conditionalities associated with the impact of microfinance on poverty reduction.

Ghana would have been in much deeper trouble if Russia had invaded China – Government Statistician

In the course of the lecture, he reminded policymakers of the need to rethink the effects of situating the Microfinance and Small Loans Centre at the Office of the President, and to implement a national database for all vulnerable microfinance clients. He also urged microfinance practitioners and funders to focus on the packaging of financial products (i.e., savings, credit, remittances, and microinsurance).

Ghana would have been in much deeper trouble if Russia had invaded China – Government Statistician

In light of his background as a micro-econometrician working with national datasets across the globe, Prof. Annim prompted researchers and policymakers to collaboratively work to improve the use of data for the realization of the outcomes and impact of policies. Prof. Annim reviewed the Data Engagement Landscape in Ghana; shared his contemplations as a Statistical Data Producer, User, Advocate, and Custodian; and introduced the Data Integrity Framework.