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Economic growth not transforming into jobs – Mahama

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Economic growth not transforming into jobs – Mahama

Economic growth not transforming into jobs – Mahama

Former President John Dramani Mahama has bemoaned the inability of graduates to find jobs in their native African countries even though the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the continent keeps rising.

Mr Mahama, who is seeking to unseat President Nana Akufo-Addo in 2020, told a gathering at a seminar on the theme: “Democracy & Elections in Contemporary Africa” at the Saïd Business School, Oxford University, UK, on Friday, 10 May 2019, that: “Africa has a burgeoning population; economic growth is not translating into jobs as fast as it is necessary to keep up with population growth”.

He said it is estimated that about 12 million graduates are churned out yearly from tertiary institutions in Africa and yet “less than 5 million sustainable job places are available for them each year”.

He indicated that despite the significant achievements chalked by the continent, “African democracy is still fragile and faces many challenges. The dividends of democracy are still not immediately tangible to the African population”.

He cited major inequalities and unfair enjoyment of the fruits of economic growth by different classes in African countries.

“Many vulnerable groups are losing out while the affluent of the growing prosperous classes is being flaunted in their faces,” he said.

He was of the view that the result is the questioning of the need for citizens to exercise their democratic right during elections “when they feel no tangible improvements in their lives”.

He was worried that social safety nets have not been effective to bridge the gap between the poor and the rich, leading to democracy fatigue.

For him, democracy should move beyond elections of different groups into governance positions and should be about improvement in people’s lives, access to social services, jobs and employment, social justice, fight against corruption and establishment of strong institutions.

Source: classfmonline.com

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6 arrested by National Security over illegal gold business

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6 arrested by National Security over illegal gold business

Some six individuals have been arrested by National Security officers in Kumasi, Ashanti Region for allegedly engaging in the illegal gold business.

Operatives of the National Security, who had the necessary permits, made the arrests.

The suspects have been transferred to the National Security headquarters in Accra for further interrogation.

Kojo Oppong Nkrumah who is the Minister for Information confirmed the arrest at a news conference in Kumasi yesterday but did not give further details.

The Minister also talked about the security situation in the country and said the government was doing everything practicable to ensure that the country was safe.

He said the government had shown good faith by retooling the security agencies and recruiting more men and women to beef up the security of the state.

Matters of security, he said, were critical to national development and would, therefore, be tackled with all urgency.

Source: primenewsghana.com

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Contractors going bankrupt; pay them – Nduom

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Contractors going bankrupt; pay them – Nduom

The Chairman of Groupe Nduom, Dr Papa Kwesi Nduom, has said the delay by the government in paying local contractors, some of whom, he said, are customers or investors, has led to the lock-up of GHS2.2 billion from the Groupe’s Gold Coast Fund Management, alone.

“When we keep fighting for Ghanaian contractors to be paid, we are fighting for customers/investors to get their money. How much? GHS 2.2 billion is currently locked up in the process from Gold Coast Fund Management alone”, Dr Nduom wrote on social media Saturday, 10 August 2019.

Other Ghanaian financial institutions, he said, “Have funds locked up in infrastructure projects. The contractors are going bankrupt. The customers have it worse. They are suffering. When a contractor is not paid after three years of completing a job, the financial institution does not get paid. The customers who invested their monies with the financial institutions don’t get paid”.

“Who should fund infrastructure – roads, bridges, schools, etc. – in Ghana?”, the former presidential candidate asked, adding: “Gold Coast has been doing it for 15 years. Over 14 billion Ghana Cedis invested. Now with a portfolio of 2.2 billion Ghana Cedis”.

“It is the government that stopped giving advance payment to contractors and asked them to pre-finance projects. Gold Coast stepped in to support our indigenous Ghanaian contractors and has funded over 600 projects. This is a good thing the company has done.

“Our concern is to get the payment process going so contractors can complete projects, get them certified, get paid so they can pay back what they owe to Gold Coast so that Gold Coast can pay back money to its customers/investors.

“This is not Nduom’s money. It is not politics. It is pocket-level economics. The money is in Ghana with government agencies and in infrastructure projects”, he said.

Dr Nduom added: “This is not the only investment made by Gold Coast, which is why it paid back over 1 billion Ghana cedis in 2018 and has paid about GHS100 million this year”.

Recently, a coalition of local contractors threatened to lock all public schools and facilities they built if the government delayed further in paying them their funds.

Source: classfmonline.com

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CBOD petroleum price outlook: Refined products review and outlook

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CBOD petroleum price outlook: Refined products review and outlook

The international market prices of gasoline and gasoil averaged $648.98/mt and $584.73/mt respectively in the first pricing window of July (12th-26th July 2019), $5.70/mt lower than the previous window in the case of gasoline and $0.89/mt higher than the previous window for gasoil.

These prices (12th-26th July) were 29% and 7% higher than average prices observed in the beginning pricing window of the year. Average international market prices have been sporadic during the year, starting the first window of January at $504/mt for gasoline and $545.63/mt for gasoil.

Prices for gasoline and gasoil peaked in the first selling window of June at $749.68/mt and $639.88/mt respectively. This was 49% and 17% higher than the prices observed in the first window of January 2019.

International market prices are expected to drop between 1%-2% for both gasoline and gasoil in the second pricing window of July (27th July-11th August 2019). This is attributable to the ongoing trade war between USA and China which has slowed the growth in China’s demand.

FuFeX60

The forward FX rate (FuFeX) used is the average of the quoted indicative forward forex rate from major oil financing banks adjusted by the covered-interest parity pricing model. The FuFex60 is computed as the average 60-day forward fx rate of selected major oil financing banks. The Fufex60 to be applied for the first selling window of August 2019 is Ghs5.60/USD.

The adoption of a FuFeX30 (30-day forward rate) instead of FuFeX60 can reduce pump prices by about 2%. It is therefore necessary that BDCs revise their trade credit tenor downwards to help reduce consumer prices at the pump.

The Ex-refinery Price Indicator (Xpi)

The Ex-ref price indicator (Xpi) is computed using the referenced international market prices as observed to be usually adopted by BDCs, factoring the CBOD economic breakeven benchmark premium for a given window and converted from USD/mt to Ghs/ltr using the FuFeX.

Source: CBOD

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