Four reasons IMANI scored NPP gov’t 54.35% on economy

Source The Ghana Report/ Dave Alamisi

Policy think tank IMANI Africa released its 2016 iManifesto report recently scoring the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government a 48 per cent on its fulfilment of promises.

Unhappy with the marks, President Nana Addo Dankwah Akufo-Addo said in a press encounter that he disagrees with IMANI and provided a score of 72 per cent based on his own assessment.

As part of reasons why the government was given the score, which is just a point better than what the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) attained in 2017, IMANI has provided the breakdown and four reasons for the marks scored by the government on promises related to the economy.

The overall score of the NPP government based on the assessment of the delivery of promises under the economy theme is 54.35 per cent. This depicts a performance within the band of satisfactory progress.

The performance under agriculture is 60 per cent which is within the upper band of satisfactory progress as was the case for tourism which scored 66.2 per cent. On the other hand, performance related to the general economy, trade and industry is 47.98 per cent which falls within the lower band of satisfactory progress.

Reasons the NPP made 54.35 per  of their economy-related promises as of 2019 per the manifesto framework:

  1. A total of 87 promises have been captured under economy, trade and industry. The results on the promises that are related to economic policy objectives are 50 per cent and the performance on macroeconomic stability is 69 per cent and economic management and taxation to production is 61 per cent. The government promises to achieve a double-digit GDP growth annually for its four-year but has failed to achieve this as growth has been 8.5 per cent in 2017, 6.3 per cent in 2018, 6.7 per cent in 2019 and is expected to be 6.1 per cent in 2020. Similarly, the promise to reduce the cost of doing business has not been actualized. For instance, Ghana dropped in the ease of doing business index1 from 108th in 2017 to 118th in 2020.
  2. In terms of promises related to fiscal discipline, the passing of the Fiscal Responsibility Act which establishes the Fiscal Council and the Financial Stability Council is notable. The formalisation of the economy has not been attained. The promise to stabilize the currency for the long term through prudent macroeconomic management, an increase in domestic production and an increase in exports is yet to be attained. The cedi has been reported to have lost 13 per cent of its value in relation to the dollar in 2019 and is “poised for the worst decline since 2015 when it slumped 18 per cent”
  3. On the abolishment of some taxes, the NPP government has made some progress. Examples include the abolishment of the 1 per cent Special Import Levy, the 17.5 per cent VAT/NHIL on selected imported medicines not produced locally, 17.5 per cent VAT/NHIL on Financial Services, five per cent VAT/NHIL on Real Estate sales and 17.5 per cent VAT/NHIL on domestic airline tickets. However, an increase in tax compliance and the broadening of the tax base has not been fully achieved with implications for revenue mobilisation strategies. The NPP also captured in their manifesto to plug leakages in the administration of public finances.
  4. The NPP cited that from 2012 to 2014, GHS5.9billion could not be accounted for. However, data from the Auditor General’s report suggests that these amounts during the NPP’s tenure are still high – 2017 (892 million) and 2018 (5.196 billion). The performance for job creation is 39 per cent and 49 per cent for business financing and the cost of doing business. The result of the empowerment of local businesses is 44 per cent and 30 per cent for harmonization in industrial relations. In the area of entrepreneurship and business development, as well as, skills development for the industry, the government’s performance is 50 per cent and 44 per cent respectively. The 2016 manifesto captures the merger of the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI) and Rural Enterprises Project (REP) to consolidate public resources which have not yet been implemented. The performance regarding external economic development needs to improve. The government scored 48 per cent on export development 36 per cent on trade and 5 per cent on consumer protection. The government has not been able to deliver on its commitment to developing modern markets and retail infrastructure in every district to enhance domestic trade. Consumer protection issues are vital but have received less attention as the promise to pass the bill is yet to be realised. It should be noted that the bill was listed in January 2019 for consideration by the Legislature.


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