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GDP growth was 7.3 per cent in 2008

By GNA

Accra, April 30, GNA – The economy grew by 7.3 per cent in 2008 buoyed by strong growth in agriculture, industry and services, the Ghana Statistical Service announced on Thursday.

The GDP growth is based on about 70 per cent of data gathered so far from the different sectors.

“Not until we get all data, and are certain the remaining could not bring about any significant change, the figures remain subject to revision,” Mr Ebo Duncan, Head, Economic Statistical Division, told journalist at a briefing to announce the revised figures.

The Ghana Statistical Service in January quoted a growth rate of 6.2 per cent, which was based on available data through September 2008, generating a lot of argument among the public.

Mr Duncan said the estimation of the GDP was done in stages, with estimates generated at each stage being dependent on source data available. The different stages generate estimates which are sequentially designated as projected, provisional, revised or final.

He attributed the delay in the release of the GDP figure to the inability of the institutions involved in data gathering on which the Statistical Service relied in making the information available on time.

The previous government had in its 2008 budget targeted a GDP growth rate of 7.0 per cent, after a period of sustained growth. GDP had jumped from 3.7 per cent in 2000 to the new figure.

The agriculture sector continues to dominate the economy with a 33.59 per cent share of total GDP. Growth in the sector was 5.1 per cent driven by crops and livestock sub-sectors which went up by 5.82 per cent.

Industry grew by 8.1 per cent with a share of total GDP of 25.89 per cent.

The mining and quarrying sub-sector grew by 2.11 per cent, while the Manufacturing sub-sector recovered from a negative growth in 2007 and rose by 4.53 per cent.

The services sector had the highest growth rate 9.3 per cent. All sub-sectors grew more than 8 per cent except community, social and personal services. Wholesale and retail trade, hotels and restaurants sub-sector recorded the highest growth of 10.16 per cent.

Dr Grace Bediako, Government Statistician, said different estimates for a given year should not raise unnecessary alarms as these were an integral part of the process of arriving at the final estimates.

GNA