Dr Yaw Baah – TUC Boss
The Trades Union Congress (TUC) of Ghana has asked Government to address what it termed as the weak link between macroeconomic stability and living standards of Ghanaians.
It made the call in its comments directed at the Finance Minister following the reading of the 2020 Budget.
“First, we note the tremendous gains in macroeconomic management in the last three years. The steady GDP Growth, falling trend in inflation, reduction in the budget deficit, the healthy level of international reserves, strong external balances, a relatively stable Ghana Cedi, etc,” it said.
“These are remarkable achievements, by any standard, especially if we take into account the recent economic history of Ghana. We commend government for these significant achievements,” the Congress said.
However, it lamented that because of low incomes, limited employment opportunities and financial exclusion (due partly to high lending rates), the macroeconomic gains made in recent times, are not adequately reflecting in the living standards of the majority of Ghanaians.
Again, it complained that lending rates in Ghana are too high and perhaps the highest in the sub-region.
“The high lending rates are an indication that something is fundamentally wrong with our economy and that we are not out of the woods yet,” it noted.
It therefore urged that the gap between macroeconomic stability and living standards must be bridged through lower lending rates and employment creation.
“We urge the Bank of Ghana to introduce and strictly enforce higher ethical standards in the financial sector to enable the sector to perform its role in economic and social development towards the President’s vision of Ghana Beyond Aid,” it further noted.
BY Melvin Tarlue