The increasing inflation rate in Ghana for the past two years can be related to the country’s wretched economic functioning and fluctuating energy supply which has led to the poor performance of the industrial sector and also increasing unemployment in the country. It is no doubt that inflation affects the standard of living for Ghanaians. However, the second quarter of 2016 seemed to have shrugged off a little better than known. With 2015’s 17.7 per cent ending inflation rate, currently about 1.2 per cent lower than 18.95 May rate which is even lesser than rates of the first quarter.
Being the sixth country in Africa with the highest inflation rate – following Malawai, Zambia, Central Africa Republic, Angola, and South Sudan. Increased taxes by current government on financial transactions, raw materials importation and instability of the country’s currency and it’s hapless performance with global major trade currencies has contributed to the country’s hardship in economic performance and consumer price inflation.
Local reports indicates that the West African cocoa, gold and oil-producing nation is implementing a three-year aid programme with the International Monetary Fund to remedy fiscal problems including inflation persistently above government targets.
Last month, Ghana’s statistics office announced an inflation fall from 18.9 per cent in May to 18.4 per cent in June on annual consumer price. According to the office, the fall in the annual consumer price is connoted by stability of the Ghana cedi in recent times and also constancy in fuel prices, probably due to recent decrease in global fuel prices.
Philomena Nyarko, who is a statistician for the government of Ghana, mentioned that June recorded some level of constancy with the Ghana Cedi while importation went well leading to low prices on imported items due to stability of the currency. She added that, these factors made consumer prices in June much better than previous months.
Consumer price inflation in April recorded 18.7 per cent which was a drop over the previous month while rising in May and dropping again in June. Comparing inflation rate for YOY on non-food items (including electricity, water, and transport), May this year recorded 25.0 per cent while June recorded 24.1 per cent. The YOY for food inflation was also recorded at 8.5 per cent in May compared to 8.6 last month – a minor change to attract focus.
At a news conference in the country’s capital, the government statistician threw light on regional inflation rates. Generally, the Greater Accra Region recorded the highest combined inflation rate and the highest non-food inflation rate while the Ashanti Region recorded the highest food inflation rate in June 2016.
The Upper East region of Ghana recorded a 6 per cent food inflation rate and also an 18.9 per cent non-food inflation rate, both of which is the lowest in the country – out of its ten regions. Greater Accra Region (the country’s capital) recorded 29.3 per cent non-food inflation rate which is the highest in the country while Ashanti Region (the second largest trade region, with Kumasi as its capital) followed with a rate of 24.4 per cent but having the highest inflation rate of 11.1% for food and non-alcoholic beverages.