New ride hailing App inDrive begins operations in Accra

Accra, Jan 3, GNA – inDrive, a global mobility and urban services platform has started operating in Ghana with the company currently operating in over 700 cities in 47 countries.

A statement issued in Accra by the Company said a distinctive feature of inDrive was its peer-to-peer pricing model, where the passenger and the driver agree on the fare and other details of the ride directly.

It said the agreements were final and did not change depending on distance, weather conditions or traffic congestion.

The inDrive app has been downloaded over 150 million times, making it the second most downloaded mobility app in the world.

The statement said the company operated in many African countries, including South Africa, Nigeria, Tanzania, Kenya, and Namibia.

It said unlike other ride hailing companies, inDrive does not use pricing algorithms and does not increase trip fares during rush hours.

“Once registered, the passenger inputs the A and B points of their route and offers their price for the trip when prompted by the app. Offers from available drivers will pop up on the screen,” it added.

The statement said the passenger then selects the offer that best suits them in terms of price, driver rating and vehicle model.

It said drivers could select the requests they accept by passenger rating and user reviews and drivers always see the destination prior to accepting the ride request.

“This fair approach to pricing stems from the company’s mission of Challenging Injustices,” it said.

The inDrive would not charge a service fee during the first stage of the launch in Accra and it meant that drivers who join the platform would be able to earn even more.

inDrive’s unique business model keeps the company competitive without needing to raise substantial investments.

Peer-to-peer pricing, combined with the lowest service fee in the world (under 10 per cent without VAT), alongside impactful campaigns, help organically grow brand awareness.

Source: Ghana News Agency

‘The Bible is a poor guide for macroeconomics’ – Prof. Hanke jabs Ken Ofori-Atta

American economist, Prof. Steve Hanke has resumed his attacks on Minister of Finance Ken Ofori-Atta critiquing the Minister’s resort to Biblical references to back his belief of an economic resurgence.

In a January 2, 2023 tweet in which Hanke posted a story by the Economist titled “Ghana has struck a preliminary IMF deal and halted debt payments,” the economist quoted a Biblical reference the Minister made late last year.

“Ghana’s Finance Minister Ofori-Atta justified defaulting on debt by quoting the Bible: “nothing will be lost, nothing will be missing.”

“The Bible is a poor guide for macroeconomics. It’s time for Ofori-Atta to stop bamboozling Ghanaians and get real,” he emphasized.

The Biblical reference was used by Ofori-Atta when he announced a Domestic Debt Exchange programme, one of the key conditions that led to a government and International Monetary Fund (IMF) Staff-Level Agreement days later.

The government suffered backlash from labour especially over the plan to include pensions in the Exchange programme, which plan has been revoked with individual bondholders now impacted. Ghana had a torrid 2022 amid an economic crisis that forced government to seek an International Monetary Fund facility at a time the cedi was rapidly depreciating, inflation was galloping and government was faced with multiple downgrades by rating agencies.

The government has serially blamed the crisis partly on the aftershocks of the COVID pandemic and the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war.

It has promised to turn around the economic fortunes of the country after sealing a Staff-Level agreement with the IMF with the hope that funds from the US$3 billion facility will be released early this year.

Source: Ghana Web

3 African billionaires defy global economic challenges with increase in net worth – Report

While the fortunes of the world’s 500 richest individuals took a hit in 2022, with a total loss of $1.4 trillion, three African billionaires managed to buck the trend.

According to data from Billionaires.Africa, Nassef Sawiris, Nicky Oppenheimer, and Abdul Samad Rabiu all saw significant increases in their net worth over the course of the year.

Egyptian billionaire Nassef Sawiris saw his wealth increase by more than $500 million in 2022. The eldest son of the late Egyptian industrialist Onsi Sawiris, Sawiris sits on the boards of Adidas and OCI N.V., a major international producer and distributor of nitrogen and methanol products.

The performance of Sawiris’ 38.8-percent stake in OCI N.V., which more than made up for the decline in his six-percent stake in Adidas, helped boost his net worth from $6.5 billion on Dec. 31, 2021, to $7.03 billion on Dec. 31, 2022.

Nigerian billionaire Abdul Samad Rabiu also saw his wealth increase significantly in 2022, with a rise of $2.2 billion.

The rise can be attributed to the listing of Rabiu’s food company, BUA Foods Plc, on the Nigerian Exchange on Jan. 5, as well as the strong performance of his stake in BUA Cement, one of Africa’s fastest-growing cement companies. Rabiu’s net worth has now increased from $5.6 billion to $7.8 billion.

South African billionaire Nicky Oppenheimer saw a more modest increase in his wealth in 2022, with a rise of $75 million. This was enough to put him on the list of African billionaires whose wealth increased in the previous year and to push his net worth above the $8-billion mark.

Oppenheimer’s fortune is derived from private equity investments made through Stockdale Street in London and Tana Africa Capital in Johannesburg in Africa, Asia, the United States, and Europe.

Looking at the increase in these billionaires’ wealth figures, it is clear that the combination of industrial assets and diverse investment portfolios assisted them in weathering the economic challenges of 2022 and emerging with even greater wealth.

Source: Ghana Web

Forex bureaus sell $1 at GH¢12.00, GH¢8.58 on interbank market as of January 3

The Interbank forex rates from the Bank of Ghana today, January 3, 2023, have shown that the Ghana Cedi is trading against the dollar at a buying price of 8.5717 and a selling price of 8.5803.

As compared to yesterday’s trading of a buying price of 8.3108 and a selling price of 8.3192. At a forex bureau in Accra, the dollar is being bought at a rate of 11.00 and sold at a rate of 12.00.

Against the Pound Sterling, the Cedi is trading at a buying price of 10.3058 and a selling price of 10.3178 as compared to yesterday’s trading of a buying price of 10.0029 and a selling price of 10.0138.

At a forex bureau in Accra, the pound sterling is being bought at a rate of 12.50 and sold at a rate of 14.50.

The Euro is trading at a buying price of 9.1412 and a selling price of 9.1502 as compared to yesterday’s trading of a buying price of 8.8514 and a selling price of 8.8602.

At a forex bureau in Accra, Euro is being bought at a rate of 11.20 and sold at a rate of 12.50.

The South African Rand is trading at a buying price of 0.5042 and a selling price of 0.5046 as compared to yesterday’s trading of a buying price of 0.4901 and a selling price of 0.4903.

At a forex bureau in Accra, South African Rand is being bought at a rate of 0.45 and sold at a rate of 0.90.

The Nigerian Naira is trading at a buying price of 55.3638 and a selling price of 55.4756 as compared to yesterday’s trading at a buying price of 55.3638 and a selling price of 55.4756.

At a forex bureau in Accra, Nigerian Naira is being bought at a rate of 12.50 Naira for every 1 Cedi and sold at a rate of 17.50.

Source: Ghana Web

Ofori-Atta must stop bamboozling Ghanaians with Bible quotes and get real – Prof. Hanke

Professor of Applied Economics at the Johns Hopkins University-USA, Steve Hanke, has called out Ghana’s Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, to be realistic in addressing the macroeconomic challenges in the country.

He believes that the trend of the minister using bible quotes during his addresses on the state of the economy is a rather poor strategy to adopt.

In a tweet posted on January 3, 2023, Prof. Steve Hanke described Ken Ofori-Atta’s use of the Bible quotations as a ‘poor guide for macroeconomics’.

He further called on the under-fire Finance Minister to stop bamboozling Ghanaians with bible quotations and rather confront the economic challenges with pragmatic policies.

“Ghana’s Finance Minister Ofori-Atta justified defaulting on debt by quoting the Bible: ‘nothing will be lost, nothing will be missing’. The Bible is a poor guide for macroeconomics. It’s time for Ofori-Atta to stop bamboozling Ghanaians and get real,” the renowned economist wrote on Twitter.

It would not be the first time Professor Steve Hanke has called out government officials over their handling of the economy which is now seeking an IMF bailout and recently defaulted on its external debt payments.

The 79-year-old economist has also described Ghana’s local currency as ‘junk’ and labelled the country’s inflation trajectory as terrible.

Source: Ghana Web

4 steps to improve your personal finances in 2023

Maybe the “enjoyment season” isn’t over for you (yet), but it’s the time of the year when you need to start working on/thinking of your personal finances:

What your 2023 goals are, what you’re maintaining, stopping or improving on.

Here are a few things to consider:

1. In 2023, take financial literacy seriously:

Read, Listen, Ask. Be interested in news items. Your personal finance management doesn’t get better automatically with the turn of the new year.

The only guarantee that tomorrow will be better is if you’re deliberately growing today.

2. Review the financial missteps we made in 2022:

Was it not planning your money correctly? Example: No budgeting, no setting of goals, financial objectives. Planning should permeate all levels of our lives.

Was it Living beyond our means?- always in debt? Etc. Reflect on yours, Think them through. No one knows/ better understands your situation better than you do.

3. What 2022 showed me is the need to improve my income streams:

There are inherent limitations on how much we can “manage” our monies. The cost of living is more likely to go up in 2023. We would have to find alternative ways of earning more. Easier said, though. But possible.

4. Small things matter:

It’s easy to say, “I’m focused on this big thing, so the small thing can wait.” When it comes to your 2023 finances, the little details should matter. The accumulation of the small things can have significant implications.

Finally, we ought to be dynamic and deliberate in 2023.

Source: Ghana Web

Dangote’s oil refinery set to transform African petroleum industry in 2023 – Report

As the countdown to the commencement of operations at the Dangote Oil Refinery nears its end, excitement and anticipation are building among Nigerians and the wider African community.

The refinery, which is set to begin operations in mid-2023, is a $19-billion integrated petrochemical complex owned by Africa’s wealthiest man Aliko Dangote.

Once completed, the refinery will be the world’s largest vertically integrated plant, with the capacity to process 540,000 barrels of Nigerian oil per day in its first phase of operation, increasing to 650,000 barrels per day afterwards.

The petrochemical complex is part of a strategic move by Dangote, and the Nigerian government to establish the country’s downstream industry and become a net exporter of refined petroleum products and petrochemicals by 2026.

The refinery is expected to meet 100 percent of Nigeria’s demand for all refined goods, while also having a surplus for export, creating a market for $11 billion in Nigerian petroleum products each year.

In addition to refined oil products, the complex will also produce 4 million metric tons of jet fuel per day, 65 million liters of premium motor spirits (petrol), 15 million liters of diesel, and 3 billion standard cubic feet of gas.

As construction nears completion, temporary housing for the 20,000 employees that will work at the refinery has been established.

This move, which is expected to fast track the operation of the plant, solidifies the group’s position as the second-largest employer in Nigeria, behind only the Nigerian government.

The commencement of operations at the Dangote Oil Refinery is a major milestone for both Nigeria and the African continent. It will not only provide much-needed refined petroleum products for domestic consumption but also have the potential to create a significant market for exports.

The project’s completion will be closely watched by the global energy industry, as it has the potential to greatly impact the petroleum market in Africa.

Source: Ghana Web

Prof. Eric Danquah among 10 Ghanaians in 2023 list of 100 Most Reputable Africans

Accra, Jan. 03, GNA – Professor Eric Danquah, Founding Director, West Africa Centre for Crops Improvement (WACCI), University of Ghana, is among 10 Ghanaians listed in the 2023 list of 100 Most Reputable Africans.

The list by Reputation Poll International (RPI), a leading global reputation firm (reputationpoll.com), which was made available to the Ghana News Agency, features individuals from sectors including Governance, Entertainment, Human rights/Advocacy, Education, and Business.

The selection criteria were Integrity, Visibility, and Impact.

Other very prominent nine personalities from Ghana featured on the list for their outstanding performance in their various fields of endeavours include Prof Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang, Chancellor of the Women’s University in Africa; and Madam Afua Kyei, Chief Financial Officer at Bank of England.

Others are Dr Dag Heward-Mills, Founder and Bishop of the Lighthouse Chapel International; Mr Edward Kobina Enninful, OBE, Editor in Chief, British Vogue; Mr Ken Kwaku, Honorary Consular of Ghana to Tanzania; and Mr Kofi Tutu Agyare, Managing Partner at Nubuke Investments.

The rest are madam Lucy Quist, Managing Director, Morgan Stanley Ghana; Sir Samuel Esson Jonah, Chancellor of the University of Cape Coast and Madam Theresa Ayaode, Executive Director of Multiple Concepts Groups.

In addition to the individuals recognised on Reputation Poll International’s “100 Most Reputable Africans” list for their various achievements, there are also those who are celebrated for their contributions to social impact and social entrepreneurship, helping to transform businesses in Africa and positively impacting lives without causing controversy.

During the announcement of the list, Ms Beldina Auma, the Co-Chairperson of the Review and Audit Committee, as well as the Chair Emeritus of the World Bank Group-IMF African Society, President of SCIP-International, said the organisation was dedicated to recognizing people, groups, and businesses who continually improve lives in Africa and around the world.

Source: Ghana News Agency