Friday, February 23

Business

Gold hits record high amid US-China tensions, Covid-19 pandemic
Business

Gold hits record high amid US-China tensions, Covid-19 pandemic

The gold price surged to a record high on Monday, fuelled by the novel coronavirus pandemic and geopolitical tensions between China and the United States. The new high of 1,944.71 dollars per troy ounce (31.1 grams) - compares to a previous record of 1,921 dollars. In addition to persistent global economic uncertainty amid the pandemic, renewed tensions between China and the United States prompted a flight to safe haven assets such as gold and the Japanese yen, analysts said. Financial markets in Japan were closed on Thursday and Friday due to public holidays. But the yen surged 1.3 per cent to 105.5 yen against the dollar later on Monday, the highest level since mid-March. Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 Stock Average lost 35.76 points, or 0.16 per cent, to close at 22,7...
Monetary Policy Committee keeps policy rate unchanged at 14.5 percent
Business

Monetary Policy Committee keeps policy rate unchanged at 14.5 percent

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of Ghana has maintained the policy rate at 14.5 percent, citing the need for macroeconomic stability amid the disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic.Announcing the decision of the committee via a virtual press briefing, Dr Ernest Addison, the Governor of the Bank of Ghana, said the current extraordinary circumstances required some monetary restraint to preserve the macroeconomic stability.“The Committee was of the view that the current extraordinary circumstances, with a widened budget deficit and a residual financing gap, would require some monetary restraint to preserve the anchors of macroeconomic stability.  In the circumstances, the Committee decided to maintain the policy rate at 14.5 percent,” he said.Dr Addison note...
Government has no intention of reviewing retirement age
Business

Government has no intention of reviewing retirement age

The Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations (MELR) says Government has no intention to review the mandatory retirement age for public sector workers.A statement issued in Accra by the Ministry said reports that Government had reduced the retirement age from 60 to 50 years was untrue.“The Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations wishes to inform the general public that the said publication is untrue and malicious,” it stated.It thus entreated the public to disregard the false publication.  The mandatory retirement for public sector employees is 60 years.
Golden Star sells Bogoso-Prestea Gold Mine for US$95m
Business

Golden Star sells Bogoso-Prestea Gold Mine for US$95m

Golden Star Resources Ltd on Monday said it has entered into an agreement with Future Global Resources (FGR) for the sale of a 90 percent stake in the Bogoso-Prestea Gold Mine.The agreement stipulates that an initial purchase price of $55 million shall be paid with a further contingent component of up to US$40 million staged payments to ensure FGR focuses investment capacity on the asset itself, while providing Golden Star with exposure to its long-term growth potential.A statement from the mining company noted that procedures were planned to continue at the Prestea underground operation, which includes the use of alimak mining on 24 Level and long hole open stoping mining activities on the newly developed 17 Level.“Following the acquisition, FGR intends to review the entire Bogoso-Preste...
President re-affirms commitment to revamp economy
Business

President re-affirms commitment to revamp economy

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has re-affirmed his Government's unwavering determination to provide resources to businesses and incentives to the ordinary Ghanaian.  This, he said, would strengthen the productive sectors of the economy and ensure sustained economic activities that had been affected negatively by the COVID-19 pandemic.  In his 14th national broadcast on Enhanced Measures against COVID-19 on Sunday night, President Akufo-Addo recounted some of the interventions and relief packages rolled-out by his Government to save businesses, jobs and livelihoods.  The interventions and reliefs included a GH¢600 million COVID-19 Alleviation Programme Business Support Scheme, free water supply for all and free electricity and subsidies to lifeline customers an...
Over 11, 000 tourists cancelled trip to Ghana
Business

Over 11, 000 tourists cancelled trip to Ghana

More than 11,000 tourists have cancelled their scheduled visit to Ghana because of the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, the Minister of Finance said on Thursday.Presenting the 2020 mid-year budget review to Parliament, Mr Ofori-Atta said the cancellations led to a projected year-to-date revenue loss of GH¢4.8 million.He said the Tourism and Hospitality Industry was currently one of the hardest-hit by COVID-19, with severe adverse impacts on travel demand and accommodation bookings, domestic tourism, and other segments including; cruises, restaurants and cafes, conventions, festivals and conferences and meetings.“Within the space of a few months, the Ghanaian tourism industry had plunged from a situation of healthy growth into a crisis mode. Based on data c...
Proactive debt management strategies reduce debt accumulation portfolio
Business

Proactive debt management strategies reduce debt accumulation portfolio

Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta on Thursday said the Government has over the past three years adopted pro-active debt management policies and strategies that helped to reduce the rate of growth of debt accumulation and risk in the debt portfolio.He also said that the Government institutionalized the preparation of an Annual Borrowing and Recovery Plan, to inform the investor community about Government’s financing plan for the fiscal year.Also, the Medium-Term Debt Strategy was realigned to the financing of the fiscal deficit and is updated or reviewed accordingly, and an annual Public Debt Report to Parliament highlighting all public debt activities for the year has also been institutionalised to promote transparency and accountability to the people.Presenting the “Mid-year Re...
COVID-19 slows economic growth
Business

COVID-19 slows economic growth

Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, the Minister of Finance, said the COVID-19 outbreak is posing significant challenges to the economy, eroding the gains made for growth and jobs in the previous years.He said sectors such as the hotel and hospitality industry, foreign direct investment, trade and industry, agriculture, health, transportation, manufacturing, real estate, financial, and education were heavily impacted.Mr Ofori-Atta, who was presenting the 2020, mid-year review budget to Parliament, said households and businesses had equally been hit with significant job losses and reduced incomes.“Collectively, 1,531 job losses were recorded between April to June 2020 from eight companies within the Ceramics, Timber, Food and Agro-processing industries in the manufacturing sub-sector,” he said....
Gov’t revises 2020 GDP growth to 0.9 percent due to COVID-19
Business

Gov’t revises 2020 GDP growth to 0.9 percent due to COVID-19

The Government has revised its growth target downwards to 0.9 percent for 2020 from the projected 6.8 percent due to the negative impact of the novel Coronavirus, the Minister of Finance Mr Ken Ofori-Atta has announced.Presenting the mid-year budget review to Parliament, Mr Ofori-Atta said the revision of the macroeconomic targets was necessitated by global and domestic developments in the first half of the year."This revision, therefore, is informed by performance of the economy for the first half-year of 2020," he said.The developments include; slowdown in economic activities as a result of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, shortfalls in domestic direct and indirect taxes, and custom taxes, as a result of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, estimated at GH¢5,089 million ...
MTN urges customers to update SIM details
Business

MTN urges customers to update SIM details

MTN Ghana on Wednesday encouraged customers to update their Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) details to ensure customer particulars are captured accurately.In line with this, MTN Ghana will send messages via SMS to enable customers to update their SIM registration details.Customers would receive messages with a URL link to effect the update.The SIM update process commenced from June 1st to the end of December 2020, a statement issued and signed in Accra by Mr Samuel Koranteng and copied to the Ghana News Agency in Accra, said.The statement said the Regulations on SIM registration required a subscriber, for the purpose of registering a SIM, to furnish the network operator or service provider with certain details and an identification document.It said to ensure that the ...