Ghana's Population Reaches 24mil But; Cedi Keeps Depreciation. WHY?

Ghana: Population Density, 2000
Image by SEDACMaps via Flickr

Ghana’s first post-independence population census was in 1960 and counted about 6.7 million inhabitants. By 1970 the national census registered 8.5 million people, about a 27 percent increase, while the most recent official census in 1984 recorded a figure of 12.3 million.
The nation’s population was estimated to have increased to about 15 million in 1990 and to an estimated 17.2 million in mid-1994. With an annual growth rate of 2.2 percent for the period between 1965 and 1980, a 3.4 percent growth rate for 1981 through 1989, and a 1992 growth rate of 3.2 percent, the country’s population was projected to surpass 20 million by the year 2000 and 35 million by 2025.
According to the Ghana Statistical Service, the provisional results of the 2010 population and housing census indicate that Ghana has a growth rate of 28 percent. There has been a steady increase in the population of about 2-3% per year since 1990.

Ghana’s population is currently at 24,223,431million according to Dr. Grace Bediako (Government Statistician) who announced provisional results of the 2010 census a couple of weeks ago.

During this same period; reports indicates that, the Ghanaian cedi have depreciated against major foreign currencies especially the US Dollar on the international market.  As at today; you’ll need Ghc1.00 52pesewas to be able to get USD1.00.
Various reasons are been given for the sudden depreciation that saw the currency reach record lows in January 2011. These include a high demand for US dollars for importation of clothing, cars and foodstuff linked to an unexpected higher import spending over the Christmas period according to Food Security Ghana
In addition some analysts claim that offshore investors are selling government bonds, recouping Cedis and converting them into dollars – thus putting pressure on the cedi, which was stable within the 1.42 – 1.44 band for most of 2010.
Renaissance Capital, as reported by Bloomberg (interactive chart), also announced that Ghana’s inflation rate will rise this year on higher food and fuel costs, while economic growth will probably miss the government’s forecast of 12.3 percent.

The big question on Ghanaians’ minds is what government will do to ensure that consumers are not put under more pressure in 2011 given all the looming and actual negative factors that indicate the opposite.
Also, are we attributing this phenomenon in the financial trend to the symptom of the Dutch Disease which usually plagues new entrants in the league of oil producing countries?


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