Inflation hits 12.6% – BoG

Inflation in Ghana finished the year 2021 at 12.6%, the Bank of Ghana has announced.

This is contained in a press release issued by the Central Bank after its Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) held its 104th meeting and the first meeting for the year.

“After falling to 7.5 percent in May 2021, inflation increased throughout the second half of the year, ending December 2021 at 12.6 percent,” the BoG press release has said.

Meanwhile, non-food inflation went up from 9.2 percent in May 2021 to 12.5 percent in December 2021 while food inflation, over the same period rose sharply, moving from 5.4 percent in May 2021 to 12.8 percent in December 2021.

According to the Bank of Ghana, the upward trajectory of inflation in the second half of 2021 reflected food supply challenges, rising crude oil prices, and some pass-through effects of exchange rate depreciation in the last quarter.

From the 12.6% figure ending December 2021, the BoG notes that inflation had moved outside the upper band of the medium-term target by 2.6 percent.

Despite these inflation figures reflecting in January 22, the Bank of Ghana says it is maintaining its Policy Rate at 14.5%.

“The latest forecast shows that inflation would likely remain above target in the near-term, driven by both external and domestic factors, and only return to target in about four-quarters ahead.

“The Committee is of the view that the dynamics associated with the November 2021 policy rate hike are yet to be fully transmitted and expects the decisive implementation of the fiscal correction measures, especially the 20 percent cut in expenditure to help moderate the upside risks to the inflation outlook.

“Under these circumstances, the Committee has decided to keep the policy rate unchanged at 14.5 percent,” part of a release from the Bank of Ghana has announced.

Meanwhile, the Monetary Policy Committee is set to continually monitor the impact of these policy measures and when needed will call an extraordinary meeting to re-assess the inflation outlook over the forecast horizon and take the necessary policy decisions accordingly.

The next meeting of the Committee is scheduled for 23rd – 25th March 2022.

The meeting will conclude on Monday, 28th March 2022 with the announcement of the policy decision.

Source: Modern Ghana

TMA and Zoomlion to begin door-to-door refuse collection

Tema,– The Tema Metropolitan Assembly (TMA) and the Zoomlion Company are to begin door-to-door refuse collection in Tema Manhean as part of measures to improve waste management in the area.

Tema Manhean with its dense population, has just a handful communal refuse bins, placed at selected points and this has not been helpful to efforts at keeping the area clean.

Mr. Frank Asante, the TMA Public Relations Officer, who spoke to the Ghana News Agency in an interview said refuse polythene bags would be supplied to residents to put in their garbage.

Tricycles would then go to the houses to collect and this would not attract any additional fee as the service charge would be part of the cost of the polybags.

He said the door-to-door waste collection in Tema Manhean, had become necessary as this was the new normal in all the other communities in the Metropolis.

The Assembly, he said, had identified four places, where the residents had turned into unauthorized dumping sites.

These are Bankuman, behind the VALCO fence wall, West Africa Gas Pipeline area, and the VALCO hospital vicinity and these huge pile of uncollected refuse is now been removed as part of the ‘Clean Your Frontage’ campaign.

Mr. Asante warned the residents to stop dumping refuse at those places, adding that offenders would be punished.

He said sensitization had been done and was still ongoing on the introduction of the door-to-door collection and the ‘Operation Clean Your Frontage’ campaign.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Soccer Intellectuals defeat Police Ladies at La McDan

Accra,- Soccer Intellectuals on Sunday, defeated Police Ladies 2-0 at the La McDan Park on match day seven of the Women’s Premier League in Accra.

Striker Jennifer Mensah Adjei put her side in the lead in the 79th minute of the game from a corner kick taken by Miriam Dzehu, which she headed straight into the net.

The first goal gave the visitors the momentum to surge forward as they started pressuring the home team for another another.

This materialised in the 81st minute, when a blunder from Police Ladies’ defender, Ivy Kolli, handed Jennifer a golden opportunity to double the lead for her side.

The win is the first for Soccer Intellectuals in the league, with seven games played so far, with a record of four draws, two loses, with a total of seven points.

The defeat puts Police Ladies on nine points having won two games, drawn three and lost two matches after seven matches.

Soccer Intellectuals’ Cecilia Hagan, was voted as the NASCO Player of the match.

Source: Ghana News Agency

E-levy receives varied views among residents in Sunyani

Sunyani, (B/R),- The government e-levy has received varied reactions from residents in the Bono Region, with some of them calling for a drastic reduction in the proposed rate of 1.75 per cent.

Few of the residents also insisted on the scrapping of the proposed levy, saying its passage would worsen the condition and over-burden Ghanaians.

In an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Sunyani, a cross-section the residents said they were unhappy with the introduction of the e-levy in the face of the current difficult economic situation.

“The introduction of the e-levy is a recipe for disaster because it would likely collapse the mobile money business because many people would not transact business electronically,” Akua Mary, a food vendor at the Central Business District (CBD) of the capital, told the GNA.

She pleaded with the government to rescind its decision on the e-levy in the supreme interest of petty traders and ordinary Ghanaians.

Madam Faustina Kowfie, a retailer, urged the government to suspend the levy, for now, saying it would have a huge toll on small scale businesses and petty traders.

However, Mr Emmanuel Addai, a dealer in stationeries, lauded the introduction of the levy and called on the government to reduce the percentage.

“If we yearn for development, then we must embrace the e-levy because it is only through taxation that the government can provide the needs of the people”, he said.

In his view, Mr Samuel Okyere, a shoe dealer, said telecommunication companies ought to pay more of such taxes and asked the government to consider the plight, listen to the majority of the people and suspend the levy.

“In fact, the e-levy is going to frustrate businesses. Taxation is not bad, but the government must have other alternatives rather than the e-levy because it is clear many Ghanaians are strongly against it,” Nana Kwesi, a dealer in second-hand clothing stated.

Meanwhile, some of the residents said they did not understand the e-levy and called for intensified public education on it.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Ernest Egyir Foundation enrolls 45 youth into skilled training

– Ernest Egyir Foundation, a non-profit charitable organisation, has enrolled 45 youths into various skilled training to promote entrepreneurial skills among the youth and also reduce unemployment in the country.

The beneficiaries drawn from various communities within the Mfantseman Municipality are the first apprenticeship cohort under the Saltpond Skills-Apprenticeship Project (SSAP) by the Foundation expected to be trained between six months to two years, depending on the type of vocation.

They are being trained in Tiling, Hairdressing, Catering, Carpentry and Joinery, Brick Laying and Construction, Plumbing, Electrical Wiring and Fittings among others on the theme; “Securing the Future of the Youth through Skills Apprenticeship”.

The Foundation also provides support for the less privileged and vulnerable in society with entrepreneurial skills to help improve their standard of living.

Speaking at the inaugural ceremony held in Saltpond, Mr Ernest De-Graft Egyir, a philanthropist and the Chief Executive Officer of the Foundation, said the training formed part of his social responsibility to support the underprivileged and push them into reaching greater heights.

That would help them in contributing their quota towards the Government’s developmental agenda of the country.

Mr Egyir said the apprentices would be sponsored through their training to graduation and will be given a start-up after completing to enable them to build a better future for themselves.

He called on benevolent organisations and individuals to get on board to assist the youth to support government efforts at reducing the rate of unemployment in the country.

The CEO reiterated that the Government alone could not employ all the youth but when they are introduced into skilled training, they could earn a living without support from anyone.

He appealed to President Nana Akufo – Addo to direct the National Celebration of Founders Day to Saltpond because a lot of political parties started in the Municipality.

Ms Ophelia Mensah Hayford, the Member of Parliament (MP) of the Mfantseman Constituency, cautioned the apprentices to take advantage of the opportunity to better their lives and eschew laziness towards work.

She pledged her support to the Foundation to empower and develop the youth of Mfantseman saying the move was one of her visions as an MP.

The MP donated five sewing machines, five hairdryers, and an undisclosed amount of money to support the foundation in training the apprentices.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Fuel prices to go up by 25 pesewas per litre in February – IES predicts

The prices of petrol, diesel, and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) will go up by 25 pesewas per litre in the first two weeks of February, this year, the Institute for Energy Security has predicted.

The Institute said the impending increment would be higher than projected if the Price Stabilisation and Recovery Levy (PSRL), currently suspended, was not extended for the month of February.

In its projections for the February 2022 First Pricing Window, the IES attributed the expected increment to hike in Brent Crude prices, LPG among other commodities on the international market.

“The pending increases come on the back of an 8.52 per cent increase in the price of Brent crude, a 5.5 per cent rise in LPG price, a 6.23 per cent increase in price of Gasoline, and 9.86 per cent jump in Gasoil price; all on the international oil and fuel markets.

“Further depreciation of the Ghana Cedi against the US Dollar on the foreign exchange (Forex) market adds on to the factors that will push up the prices of the commodities on the local market,” it said.

The IES said the impending price increases could see all the major Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) crossing the Gh¢7 per litre mark for Gasoil and Gasoline, moving the price increases for both products over the past 6-months beyond the 16- percentage mark recorded at end of January 2022.

Petrol and diesel are currently selling at an average GHC6.9 and GHC7.0 per litre respectively at the local pumps.

Some OMCs are, however, selling both petrol and diesel for as low as GHC6.3 per litre.

Before the beginning of the year, both petrol and diesel were trading at GHC6.7 per litre at the pumps.

In its review of the January Second Pricing Window, the IES found that the price of international benchmark Brent rose within the period, pushing prices to an average of $87.16 per barrel, representing an increment of 8.52 per cent from the previous window’s average price of $80.30 per barrel.

Within the last two weeks, Brent crude price touched $90 a barrel, occasioned by the low cushing and distillate inventories, combined with the supply jitters in Europe, it said.

“In the last two weeks, the price of Gasoline increased by $48.31 per metric tonne (6.23 per cent) from its earlier price of $774.94 per metric tonne. The price of Gasoil rose sharply by 9.86 per cent, adding $68.61 per metric tonne, to end the two-week session at $764.61 per metric tonne,” it said.

The IES also found that the Ghanaian Cedi depreciated marginally against the U.S. Dollar by 0.2 per cent on average terms in the first pricing window of January 2022 to trade at Gh¢6.285 to the dollar, from the previous window’s rate of Gh¢6.262 to the international currency.

As part of measures to lessen the burden on consumers, the Government extended the suspension of the PSRL on petrol, diesel, and LPG to the end of January 2022.

The PSRL, which has been suspended since November, 2021, imposes a 16-pesewas-per litre levy on petrol, 14-pesewas per litre on diesel, and 14-per kilogram on LPG.

Source: Modern Ghana

Nsawam-Adoagyiri MP donates beds to hospitals

Nsawam (E/R)– Mr Frank Annoh-Dompreh, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Nsawam-Adoagyiri, has donated 50 special hospital beds to 13 health centres in the municipality for effective health care delivery.

The beds, procured at a cost of 250,000.00 Ghana cedis, will be distributed to the Ahuntem Darmang, Adoagyiri Zongo, Nsumia, Djankrom, Fotobi, Akraman, Kwakyekrom, and Obregyimah centres among others.

In an interview with the Ghana News Agency, the MP, also the Majority Chief Whip in Parliament, said the country’s health delivery system needed to be supported to take good care of the citizenry and save lives, hence the donation to complement government’s efforts.

He said he had helped to construct a water closet toilet facility for the Nsawam Government Hospital and supplied equipment to the hospital at a cost of 500,000 Ghana cedis to enhance health care delivery.

Mrs Eunice Abraku, the Nsawam-Adoagyiri Municipal Health Director, who received the items on behalf of the Ministry of Health, commended the MP for the gesture and called on philanthropists, non-governmental organisations and individuals to assist hospitals in the country.

She gave the assurance that the health authorities in the municipality would ensure that the items were kept in good condition to prolong their lifespan.

Source: Ghana News Agency

WACWISA participates in development of solar irrigation curriculum

Ho, – A team from the West African Centre for Water, Irrigation and Sustainable Agriculture (WACWISA) of the University for Development Studies (UDS) has participated in a workshop to develop curriculum for Solar Powered Irrigation System (SPIS) in the country.

The four-day Curriculum Review Workshop, held in Ho, brought together other stakeholders from research and training institutions and the private sector with the goal of enhancing collaboration.

This is in line with the German Development Cooperation (GIZ) Green People’s Energy Project, which aims at increasing the use of solar energy in irrigation of agricultural crops across the country.

The development of the curriculum forms part of activities under components of the one-year project, signed as a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between WACWISA-UDS and GIZ-Green People’s Energy Project.

Under the MoU, WACWISA-UDS will train sector players in the five regions – Northern, North East, Savannah, Upper East and Upper West.

WACWISA was established in 2019 by the UDS as a semi-autonomous centre of excellence to undertake cutting-edge research and training in irrigation, drainage, water resources management, sustainable agriculture, climate change, and food and nutrition security.

Currently, it has 138 students from 25 countries pursuing Master’s and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) programmes in Irrigation and Drainage Engineering and Environmental Management and Sustainability.

With a tagline “Building Capacities for Sustainable Solutions”, WACWISA build’s capacities of trainees and graduate students through short courses, Master’s, PhD and post-doctoral level programmes, as well as undertakes applied and advanced research, and develops sustainable localised technologies in water resources, irrigation, climate change, sustainable agriculture and food and nutrition.

WACWISA’s training and research programmes are enhanced through established partnerships with research institutions and industry partners within and outside the country.

The training system emphasises quality and capacity building for students and places premium on practical skills and solutions to industry problems.

Meanwhile, the GIZ Green Energy People’s Project has supported the establishment of a SPIS demonstration site for training and research purposes at WACWISA, located at the Nyankpala Campus of UDS.

Source: Ghana News Agency