Ghana is fast emerging as a valuable investment destination in West Africa
Ranked as the most stable political environment within the West African sub region and fifth in Africa, Ghana has much to offer Indian and foreign investors.
Nestled along the Gulf of Guinea and the Atlantic sea, in West Africa, Ghana is one of the most stable democracies in Africa, providing investors with a peaceful and predictable operating environment. Home to one of largest ports in West Africa, combined with its strategic location make it the perfect springboard for country. In addition, with an average of 8 hours of flying time to Europe and the Americas, Ghana also ensures fast links to international markets.
According to Deloitte, Ghana’s economic growth is expected to improve substantially between 2017 and 2021. This improvement is expected to be largely driven by the services sector, specifically industries such as telecommunications, FMCGs and financial services.
The country also boasts of a strong local market propelled by urbanisation and a growing middle class. According to KPMG, this middleclass is composed of individuals with a daily income of at least $8.44 – exceeds 1m people. Ghana also has a youthful population, with some 60 per cent of the population falling between the ages of 15 and 64 years, providing investors with a young, educated workforce.
Top sectors for investment
The agricultural sector is a key driver of the Ghanaian economy, contributing an estimated 21.3 per cent for 2013 of the GDP. Ghana imports over US$450 million worth of rice alone annually and also substantial amounts of chicken, meat and dairy products, opening up opportunities for investing local farming to build up capacity to produce crops and maintain livestock. Several opportunities also exist in developing storage and supply infrastructure for post-harvest.
Financial services in Ghana are categorised into three main sectors: Banking and finance (including non-bank financial services and forex bureaus); Insurance; and Financial market/capital markets. There is a high demand for various financial services in Ghana, as supported by the consistent high growth of companies in the banking sector. The relatively underdeveloped financial services sector in neighbouring countries is an opportunity for financial service firms in Ghana to supply needed services in those countries. Following Ghana’s oil discovery in commercial quantities and on-going exploration activities, enormous opportunities exist for the banking and financial sector to finance and insure the numerous large-scale transactions taking place.
The discovery of oil in 2007 in Ghana’s Jubilee Field is worth $1.5 billion to $2 billion has driven many oil and gas investors to Ghana. Energy Electricity accounts for 69 per cent of modern energy used in the economy. Electricity generation and distribution is largely state owned. However, the Government of Ghana has in recent times engaged in discussions with various investors regarding the construction of power plants. This is important because the country is going through its worst power crisis to date. Ghana loses about 2 per cent to 5 per cent of GDP annually as a result of lost economic output due to the insufficient and unreliable power supply. There is therefore huge demand for investors in this sector.
Ghana is rich in gold, bauxite and diamonds reserves. Mining , therefore, has attracted huge investment over the decades. The mining sector has therefore been an important part of Ghana’s economy, with gold accounting for over 90 per cent of the sector. The mining sector has produced 4,313,190 ounces of gold, which is the highest ever in the history of the country, resulting in export revenues of more than $5.6 billion. Ghana is the second largest gold producer in Africa and the 9th largest producer in the world. The sector directly contributed 38.3 per cent of Ghana’s total corporate tax earnings, 27.6 per cent of government revenue and 6 per cent GDP in 2011.This has included the development of a database on goods & services required by the mining industry; Investing in gold mining and services provides a huge opportunity.