Poor Natural Resources Mgt Cause of Ghana’s Poverty – World Bank

By Papisdaff Abdullah.

A World Bank Strategic Country Diagnostics (SCD) of Ghana has discovered that poor management of the Economy and the Country’s Natural Resources are the main challenges hindering the sustainability of Ghana’s socioeconomic development efforts.

The research sponsored by the World Bank as well as the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and International Development Association (IDA) focused on three thematic areas; Ghana’s state of development, why Ghana is where it is and the Pathway forward and Emerging Constraints.

Strategic Country Diagnostics among other functions identify the most important challenges and opportunities a country faces in achieving poverty reduction and shared prosperity in a sustainable way. It is based on analysis elaborated in close consultation with all stakeholders and aims to contribute to the government’s development planning process.

The SCD also serves as the basis for the World Bank Group’s Country Partnership Framework (CPF). The CPF acts as the guide to the World Bank Group on the kind of support it should offer to its member countries.

Findings of the Ghana Systematic Country Diagnostic

According to the Ghana specific diagnostics, the country by and large has been at the forefront of poverty reduction in Africa since the 1990s.

However, the study discovered that the poverty status of individuals in Ghana is strongly correlated with the type of employment they have such as being employed in the private sector, public sector or self-employed.

The study also identified declining government effectiveness, complex economic management of the natural resource-rich country, constraints on private sector growth and a costly large public sector are the reasons why Ghana is where it is in its poverty reduction efforts.

The report recommended three essential pathways that will propel Ghana to a State where its poverty reduction efforts can gain momentum.

The first is quality Labour-intensive growth.

At the micro level the report suggest that government support for the private sector needs to improve as that is sure way to speed up the growth process of the country.

It also recommended increase in education spending, access to land and access to electricity.

At the Macro level, the report said new systems need to be put in place for the management of the country’s natural resources. If these are carried out, the outcome would be poverty reduction through more and better jobs.

The second pathway according to the report is efficient public service provision. Transparent and accountable fiscal decentralization, government effectiveness and sector financial planning will result in Public services facilitated development and improved revenue mobilization.

The last is spatial equality and reduced vulnerability. The report said spatially equal services such as health, sanitation and water, social protection are key to the fight to reduce poverty.

If this is done, there would be more equal opportunities and access to services, and reduce disparity between urban and rural dwellers, the report added

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