Industrial, education sectors to see major boost

To create jobs to boost economic growth, a total of 79 factories, under the One-District-One-Factory scheme will be at various stages of completion or operation in nine regions before end of the year, Finance Minister Ken Ofori said at the 2019 national budget reading in Parliament.

Effective 2019, the scheme will partner with private financial institutions to fund more factories to expand their activities and programmes which aims at employing people onto the sector.

Some very critical areas the scheme is expected to support are feed mills and chicken processing facilities in the poultry industry.

In line of curbing the practice of producing aluminum by the Volta Aluminium Company (VALCO), but still importing alumina, the Ghana Integrity Aluminum Development Corporation (GIADEC) will be established next year to identify strategic partners for the extraction and refining of bauxite reserves.

The company has continued to play key roles in the efforts of developing an Integrated Aluminium Industry (IAI). When the project is done, it is estimated that over 700 million metric tons of bauxite deposits in the country, namely, Kibi and Nyinahin, will generate over US$1.05 trillion and create about 2.3 million jobs.

To reduce the importation of more petroleum products, a petrochemical hub is set to be established to refine petroleum products.  It is estimated that Ghana exported over US$2.8 billion worth of crude oil in 2017, but imported US$1.7 billion of refined petroleum products.

Educational interventions

Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta noted that a proposal has been sent to parliament aiming to securing US$1.5 billion facility for long-term financing of Ghana Educational Trust Fund (GETFUND).

When successful, the amount will be issued in three tranches -US$500,000, to cover critical educational infrastructure. These include the completion of secondary and tertiary institutional buildings, upgrading 10 Technical Universities and 13 Technical Institutes with modern equipment whiles 34 Vocational Training Institutes will feel part of the upgrading process.

By Dundas Whigham