A former director of the Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research (ISSER) has projected that Ghana will achieve a real per capita income of $4800 by the year 2015.
Delivering a keynote address, Prof. Kodwo Ewusi said by exceeding $4000, Ghana will become a true middle income country. The Rector of West End University College was speaking at the 1st Annual Economics Conference at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology on September 19, 2011.
He explains that according to World Bank figures in 2010 for classification, middle income nations have been grouped from $1006 to $3975; $3976 to $6285 and $6286 to $12785. This represents lower middle income, middle-middle income and upper middle income respectively.
Ghana currently falls under lower middle income and he believes the production of oil will propel the nation into middle-middle income status by the next four years.
“Because of the oil, Ghana is going to be a true middle – middle income nation by the year 2015. If oil did not come in, Ghana will remain in the lower middle income for a long time,” he reiterated.
Prof. Ewusi also noted that Ghana will achieve the 1st Millennium Development Goal of reducing poverty by 50%. He however stated that Ghana must pursue the objective of reducing the poverty rate to less than 9%.
He said, “Ghana is slated to achieve the millennium goal by reducing the poverty rate from 56% in 2000 to 26% in 2015. Poverty rate reduced to 28% in 2008 but we do not have to be alluded in complacency. With oil, I will recommend that the government should target to reduce the poverty rate to a single digit by the year 2020 because even at the present rate of 28%, 7 million Ghanaians are desperately poor and population will still cause people to be poor even at a poverty rate of 10%”.
By David Apinga, Focus FM, KNUST, Kumasi.