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Fitch, Moody’s project strong growth for Ghana but World Bank thinks otherwise

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Rating agencies, Fitch and Moody’s have projected a strong economic growth for the country in 2021.

Fitch is projecting a growth of 4.8 per cent while Moody’s is projecting a growth of four per cent.

The World Bank is, however, being modest with its projection, projecting a gross domestic product (GDP) growth of 1.4 per cent.

The 1.4 per cent projected growth is lower than the Bank’s 2.7 per cent growth projection for sub-Saharan Africa.

The World Bank in its Global Economy Report for 2021 indicated that growth in the region was forecast to rebound moderately to 2.7 per cent in 2021.

While the recovery in private consumption and investment is forecast to be slower than previously envisioned, export growth is expected to accelerate gradually, in line with the  rebound in activity among major trading partners.

The report said that the resumption in activity in major advanced and emerging economies and key trading partners of the region (Europe, China, US) was chiefly underpinned by positive news on vaccine development and rollout as well as new rounds of fiscal stimulus.

It noted that the expectations of a sluggish recovery in sub-Saharan Africa reflect persistent COVID-19 outbreaks in several economies that had inhibited the resumption of economic activity.

“The pandemic is projected to cause per capita incomes to decline by 0.2 per cent this year, setting Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) further out of reach in many  countries in the region.

“This reversal is expected to push tens of millions more people into extreme poverty over last year and this year,” the report noted.

The World Bank also pointed out that the global economy was expected to expand by four per cent in 2021, assuming an initial COVID-19 vaccine roll-out becomes widespread throughout the year.

The group said this would however likely be subdued, unless policy makers move decisively to tame the pandemic and implement investment-enhancing reforms, the World Bank says in its January 2021 Global Economic Prospects.

Although the global economy is growing again after a 4.3 per cent contraction in 2020, the pandemic has caused a heavy toll of deaths and illness, plunged millions into poverty, and may depress economic activity and incomes for a prolonged period.

It noted that to support economic recovery, authorities also needed to facilitate a re-investment cycle aimed at sustainable growth that is less dependent on government debt.

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