Former Head of the Economics Department at the University of Ghana and Professor at the Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research (ISSER), Professor Peter Quartey says some economic policies implemented during the Jerry John Rawlings era have been fundamental to the sustained economic growth Ghana is enjoying now.
The first President of the 4th Republic, Jerry John Rawlings, died at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital on Thursday, November 12, 2020, where he was receiving treatment after battling ill-health.
Speaking to Citi Business News on his influence on the economic transformation of Ghana, Professor Quartey highlighted the implementation of the Economic Recovery Program and the divestiture of State-owned enterprises as being pivotal.
“I recall vividly the Economic Recovery Program that in 1983/1984 was fashioned out to reverse the decline in economic activities and the many declines that we witnessed. And from 1984, we saw growth pick up, we saw businesses flourishing, since then we have recorded positive growth rates. If you look at the 70s and early 80s, the economy either recorded negative or very low growth rate. Some of them were attributed to coup d’états, but the reforms and political stability ensured that we recorded positive and increasing growth rates and that is very remarkable. When your economy is growing, businesses also flourishes, employment increases and people get income, and for me, that reform is very remarkable and very historic in the history of the country.”
“Within the same period, we saw the divestiture of state-owned enterprises. There were quite a number of SOEs that were not making profit but were heavily dependent on the public purse. There was the setup of the Divestiture Implementation Committee to look into that and some of them were taken off the books of government and that really helped. For me those two are very critical, the reforms to transform the economy from a negative or low growth rate to a positive one, as well as the divestiture of SOEs to make sure that State-Owned Enterprises become profitable. May His Soul Rest In Peace,” he added.