Population (2017): 27.5 million
GDP (2017): US$47.0 billion (S$63.5 billion)
World Bank “Ease of Doing Business” Rank (2018): 120
Bilateral Trade with Singapore (2017): S$262.4 million
Ghana saw real GDP growth of around 8.4% in 2017, one of the highest in West Africa1. It is the continent’s second-biggest producer of gold and cocoa, and the 11th largest gold producer in the world.
Besides oil, the country is noted for its rich and diverse resource base, including bauxite, diamonds, manganese ore, and timber. Major manufacturing industries include automotives and ship building, as well as oil refineries, plastics, and textile.
Ghana has one of the largest stock exchanges in Africa; in 2014, its exchange had an estimated market capitalisation of over US$20 billion2 (S$27 billion). The country ranks 122nd in economic freedom3.
In 2017, Ghana’s bilateral trade with Singapore amounted to S$262.4 million. As there are already ongoing trade relations, Singapore businesses are in a good position to partner with Ghanaian counterparts. In both countries, the private sector shares similar interests in oil and gas, as well as export businesses.
1: "Top 10 fastest growing economies in Africa 2018” IT News Africa, 4 May 2018
2: “Ghana Market Update - September 2011”, Intercontinental Bank (UK)
3: The Heritage Foundation, 2018
According to the Marsh Political Risk Map (2018), Ghana is one of the most politically stable countries in West Africa. The state transitioned to a multi-party democracy in 1992, and has held free elections for the past two decades. According to Transparency International, Ghana ranked as the second least corrupt state in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in 20114.
Ghana’s stability has drawn long-term investors and foreign businesses alike. The country also maintains strong relations with the international community, as one of the leading examples of democracy in West Africa.
4: “Keep calm and carry on: A strong and stable democracy has been built over the years”, Oxford Business Group.
Ghana Vision 2020 is an ongoing programme aimed at accelerating the state’s economic growth5. Initiated in 1995, the plan promotes private sector growth, and aggressive public spending on industrialisation, infrastructure, and social services. If the programme’s progress is maintained, Ghana’s goals of reaching high-income economy status, and newly industralised country status, can be realised between 2020 and 2039.
The general corporate tax rate in Ghana is 35% for upstream petroleum companies, but only 25% for most other industries. Hospitality related businesses pay taxes of only around 22%.
Ghana’s government has also taken significant steps to be more business-friendly. According to the World Bank’s Doing Business report in 2018, the time for setting up a business in Ghana is now 14 days, down from 33 days in 2010.
5: "Ghana's vision 2020, 7-Year Development Plan" GhanaWeb, 5 August 2014.
Ghana became an oil producer in 2010. In 2013, Ghana produced 115,000 to 200,000 barrels of crude oil a day. Ghana’s oil and gas industry is growing, with a total proven reserve base of approximately 883 million barrels of oil in 2014. It exported US$2.66 billion (S$3.6 billion) worth of crude petroleum in 2016.
At present, Ghana has over 36,000 km2 and 103,600 km2 of open offshore and onshore acreages. This number is expected to grow, with ongoing efforts in oil and gas exploration.
New output from Ghana’s Tweneboa-Enyenra-Ntomme (TEN) and Sankofa fields, when combined with the Jubilee field, are expected to boost Ghana's oil and gas production significantly in 2020. This provides growing opportunities for the oil and gas sector, as well as tangentially related services6.
Oil and gas companies from Singapore are well positioned to provide the expertise and equipment needed, in Ghana’s young oil-producing industry.
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6: “Ghana’s Oil Industry: Steady growth in a challenging environment”, The Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, April 2018.