Business News of Wednesday, 4 February 2015
Business confidence in the fourth quarter of 2014 recorded a surge despite the current energy crisis facing the country, according to the latest Business Barometer Index released by the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI).
The BBI measures the level of confidence in the business environment and predicts short-term business trends.
Chief Executive Officer Seth Twum Akwaboah attributed the rise in confidence to the reversal of the Central Bank’s forex measures which were outlined as part of efforts to stabilise the falling Cedi early last year.
“In quarter two last year, confidence level dropped so much and when you ask the business people, they will tell you it was largely due to the Cedi depreciation, so when Bank of Ghana reversed the measures, then in quarter three, we saw some improvement but people were still unsure if indeed the stability had come to stay, or it was just a cosmetic movement.
“But then in quarter four, when the Cedi stabilised throughout then they said: ‘Ok now we are attaching some importance to it’, and we think we are now confident for the environment,” Mr. Akwaboah told Starr Business. The AGI, however, has warned that the current power crisis, which has come about due to a production shortfall, is taking a heavy toll on Industry.
Mr Akwaboah says the Government must implement pragmatic measures to lessen the impact of the current energy crisis.
“We have a big challenge now with the power getting to the end of the year. We all knew we were going through power rationing, but the expectation was that by the end of the year the electricity situation would be normalised. Unfortunately, we have come into the first quarter of this year, and the situation is the same.”