The Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, says government has decided to produce some items locally to reduce the current high import bill.
According to him, the country’s heavy dependence on imports places tremendous pressure on the currency. This creates an unfavorable balance of payments position which increases government expenditure.
He indicated that the situation further increases the inflation rate and makes goods expensive.
“On average, Ghana’s import bill exceeds US$10 billion annually and is accounted for by a diverse range of items that include; iron, steel, aluminum, sugar, rice, fish, poultry, palm oil, cement, fertilizers, pharmaceuticals, Toilet roll, toothpick, fruit juices.”
During the presentation of 2023 budget to Parliament, Mr. Ofori-Atta further stated that the country can locally produce items that account for 45 percent of the country’s annual imports.
The government has therefore targeted goods which can be produced locally for import substitution through partnerships with players in the private sector.
“To this end, Government will target these products for import substitution by supporting the private sector, through partnerships with existing and prospective businesses to expand, rehabilitate and establish manufacturing plants targeted at producing these selected items,” he said.
Through the production and purchase of locally made goods, there will be a reduction on importation which will in turn lessen the high inflation rate.
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