President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo Tuesday said Ghana's public finance was now in order. He said the period when the country's economic indicators "went haywire and through the roof are over."
"The days of disarray in our public finances, the reason for our recent marriage with the IMF, are over,” the President said when he commissioned three new State-of-the-art production plants for Unilever Ghana Limited at Tema, near Accra.
The three facilities, a biomass boiler, a personal care dryer, and an oral care factory, all situated in the Unilever factory complex in the Tema Industrial area, would guarantee the quality of Unilever products and enable it contribute to an eco-friendly environment.
The President said Government was determined to "provide stability to our economy to serve as the foundation for its sustainable and rapid growth.” He assured the private sector of his administration’s continued commitment to creating a stable economic framework and positive outlook for businesses.
His government, among several measures to address the macro-ecomics of the country, had enacted a new fiscal rule, which caps fiscal deficit at a maximum of 5%, and ensures a debt-to-GDP ratio of a maximum of 65%.
The President commended Unilever for putting up the three new plants, and for the company's continued presence and partnership with Ghana, that has spanned nearly a century.
He said the company's presence in Ghana, had proved to be largely beneficial for the stakeholders involved. “Unilever has become a household name in Ghana, with millions and millions of Ghanaians, on a daily basis, using products the company manufactures here in our country.
"On behalf of the Ghanaian people and government, I express the appreciation of the nation to Unilever Ghana Ltd for its many years of service to the growth of our nation,” he added.
The President said the establishment of the three additional factories would not only increase the manufacturing capacity of the company, but would also lead to the creation of more jobs for the people of the locality, and, indeed, of Ghana.
“I am excited by the company’s decisions to bring onshore its operational capabilities into the country, and to continue to source locally its raw material base. "It is my hope and expectation that many more companies would commit to this development,” President Akufo-Addo added.
Noting Government's limited ability to create jobs, President Akufo-Addo said it was the primary responsibility of the private sector to generate jobs, with the active support of government.
“It is for this reason that, since assuming office two years ago, my Government set out to build the most business friendly economy in Africa. "Through the abolishing of nuisance taxes, reduction of utility tariffs, and the introduction of reforms to ease the process of doing business in the country, we have succeeded, albeit modestly, in creating a conducive business climate where the macroeconomic fundamentals are all pointing in the right direction, spurring on the growth of the private sector.
“Our goal is to unleash the innovative and entrepreneurial instincts of the Ghanaian private sector to drive rapid growth and job creation, and I am confident that we are on course to realising this important goal,” he said.
“The government I lead is a natural cheerleader for the private sector, and it is my sincere wish that Unilever, and, indeed, the Ghanaian private sector will take advantage of the growing business friendly climate in the country to invest further in Ghana.
“Cascading investments in our economy is the most effective way to expand and strengthen it in order to create the many jobs our young people so ardently want. It will happen, and soon,” President Akufo-Addo assured.