Economy Grows 8.7% In First Quarter Of 2012

Ghana's economy grew provisionally at a rate of 8.7 per cent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2012, the Ghana Statistical Service said in Accra on Wednesday, citing increase in gold and bauxite production. On year-on-year basis, industry recorded the highest year-on-year growth of 21.7 per cent followed by Services (5.7 per cent) while agriculture declined by 2.9 per cent. Mr Kofi Agyeman-Duah, Acting Deputy Government Statistician, said forestry and logging recorded the highest growth of 274 per cent in the agriculture sector while fishing declined. The crops sub-sector grew by 5.0 per cent and livestocks by 12.8 per cent. Similarly, all sub-sectors in the industry sector recorded positive growth, with strong growth in gold and bauxite production and crude oil production leading to a 49.2 per cent increase in the mining and quarrying sub-sector. Manufacturing also grew by 22.6 per cent with wood, furniture and paper leading the way. There was a 16.9 per cent increase in electricity production while construction went up by 3.7 per cent. In the area of services sub-sectors such as personal services activities, business and other activities, transport and storage, led the growth. However, value of goods and services produced fell on a quarter-on-quarter basis by 22.2 per cent in the first quarter of 2012 compared to that of the fourth quarter in 2011, driven mainly by the seasonal nature of agricultural activities and the weakness in the services sector. The industry sector grew by 7.1 per cent quarter-on-quarter, while agriculture declined by 57.3 per cent with the services sectors declining by 16.5 per cent. Mr Agyeman-Duah said all activities under the agriculture sector recorded declines in out-put in the first quarter of 2012 compared to that of the fourth quarter of 2011 due to seasonal effect. On the other hand all activities in the services sector recorded quarter-on-quarter declines, except information and communication and finance and insurance sub-sectors.