Invest In Infrastructural Dev’t – Prof Fosu Tells Gov’t

PROF FOSUAn Associate Professor of the Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research (ISSER) of the University of Ghana, Legon, Professor Augustine Kwasi Fosu, has urged the government to invest heavily in the infrastructural  development of the country.

According to him, proper infrastructure development in the energy, water and services sectors were needed to propel the growth of industries.

He cautioned the government against investing in unproductive ventures, which do not yield adequate returns on investment and excessive government expenditures.

Professor Fosu was delivering a lecture on the topic: “Macroeconomic Reforms in Ghana’s Economic Development since the 1980’s,” in Accra.

PROF FOSUThe lecture formed part of a series of activities under the Economy of Ghana Network (EGN) Phase II of ISSER which was sponsired by the African Capacity Building Foundation.

Prof. Fosu said significant reforms since 1980 had occurred in the country’s macro-economy but stressed that significant infrastructural development must be the focus of government now, otherwise industries could not grow and expand.

He noted that Ghana’s income was still too low and its poverty rate of nearly 30 per cent too high and proposed a change in the structure of the economy.

“The country also needs to gradually wean itself away from intentional support of its domestic and external deficits,” he stressed.

Professor Fosu, who is also a Deputy Director, UN University-WIDER, Helsinki, Finland, urged the government to use the country’s democratic maturity to attract requisite productive domestic investment and Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).

He said the government must ensure fiscal prudence, both domestically and externally and work towards achieving greater productive infrastructure in the form of physical, human and institutional.

Dr. Joseph Kwadwo Asenso, a representative of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, said the economy of Ghana was challenged by high unemployment, emerging pressures from the labour front for higher salaries against the backdrop of relatively low revenue generation.

He stressed that the economic prospects of Ghana were bright with the expected debut production of gas in the second half of 2014, the TEN field set to produce crude oil in the second half of 2016 and the ramped-up jubilee output in the medium term.

Dr. Asenso said the government had put in measures   to forestall budget overruns some of which include the application of the GIFMIS to control expenditure and the building of a contract database to ensure the completion of pipeline projects before new ones were rolled out.

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