I'll grow economy by 8% in 2017 - Mahama
President John Mahama has said his government has laid a good economic foundation in his first term which would see the economy grow by 8% next year, thus, the need for Ghanaians to vote to retain him in office in the December 7 polls.
Mr Mahama said: "My vision is to transform Ghana into the most important, the most inclusive, and the most inspirational democracy in Africa in my second and final term, God willing. To achieve this fundamental goal, we need to create more jobs. We need a more vibrant economy, where opportunities grow for everybody and where success stories embolden the young ones to dream big."
He said during the last four years, "we built the foundation for this". The results, he said, are as follows: "In 2012, services represented 47 per cent of our GDP; in 2015, they represented almost 50 per cent, consolidating our transition to a modern, service-centred economy driven largely by technology and a vibrant youth.
"In 2012, exports represented 40 per cent of the GDP; in 2015, they represented 44 per cent, proving that Ghanaian goods consolidated their position on the international market.
"We moved upwards from less than 15,000 registered carrier departures worldwide in 2012, to over 20,000 in 2015.
"The domestic credit to private sector grew from 15 per cent of Ghana’s GDP in 2012 to 20 per cent in 2015.
"All these results mean more jobs and more employment opportunities. Unemployment went down from 3.6 per cent in 2012 to 2.4 per cent in 2014 (the last year with available data from the World Bank). At the same time, employment to population ratio grew from 66.6 per cent in 2012 to 67.8 per cent in 2014."
Mr Mahama, who is currently in the Eastern Region on a campaign tour, said: "Apart from this, Ghana moved upwards in the Index of Economic Freedom. In 2012, we were 84th in the world; today, we are 72nd in the world.
"All these data provided by prestigious international organisations depict the true picture of our modernising and transformative achievements during the last four years. The transformation was not necessarily easy. It was not by chance and some paid a higher cost than others during this period. However, nobody can deny that as a nation we are better off today than we were four years ago – and much better off than we were a decade ago.
"I have said it before, and I will say it again and again: these are not my achievements, these are our achievements – and for that I am deeply grateful to all of you! And let me add, notwithstanding these impressive collective achievements, the work is by no means over.
"Based on this economic and social transformation, we built the foundation for true and solid growth. Now, we are ready to harvest the benefits particularly as our economy is projected to grow above 8 per cent next year."
As far as corruption is concerned, Mr Mahama said his government's worst corruption index performance is far better than the best anti-corruption record of the main opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) during the eight-year period of the Kufuor administration.
"…When it comes to fighting corruption, in 2012 we were the 64th least corrupt country in the world. In 2015, we were 56th, i.e. 7th in Africa and our worst record over the years remains superior to the best record during the tenure of the NPP," Mr Mahama wrote on his website.