What Do You Know About “GHANA”
Republic of Ghana Capital city: Accra
Location: West Africa
Population: 25.1 million (July 2013 estimate)
Official language: English
Currency: Ghana Cedi (GH¢)
Independence: 6 March 1957
Time zone: Greenwich Meridian Time: (GMT)
Average temperature: 26o C (about 79o F)
GDP: US$44,154 million (September 2013 estimate)
GDP per capita: US$1,668 (September 2013 estimate)
Average exchange rate: US$ 1 = GH¢ 2.40
Inflation rate: 13.2% (September 2013)
Official business hours: 8:00am – 5:00pm
(Sources: Ghana Statistical Service/ Central Intelligence Agency – The World Factbook)
Ghana, formerly known as the Gold Coast, is located along the Atlantic Ocean and is found on the southern part of West Africa. Ghana shares borders with Côte d’Ivoire to the west, Burkina Faso up north, Togo to the east and the Gulf of Guinea down south. The Greenwich Meridian passes through a city in Ghana called Tema, making it one of the few cities at the centre of the earth. The name Ghana was derived from the ancient Ghana Empire and it means ‘Warrior King’
Regions and their capital towns
There are 10 administrative regions in Ghana. Below is a list of the various regions and their capital towns:
Climate, Vegetation and Geography
Ghana’s climate is mainly tropical and there are two main seasons, namely rainy and dry seasons. The rainy season normally spans from March to October and dry season from mid-October to early March.
Ghana has a total land area of 238 533 km2 with most of its land area characterised by low physical reliefs. The highest elevation in Ghana is the mountain Afadjato, which rises about 889 meters above sea level.
About 136 000 km2 of land, covering approximately 57% of the country’s total land area of 238 533 km2 , is classified as ‘agricultural land area’, out of which 58 000 km2 (24.4%) is under cultivation and 11 000 hectares under irrigation. One of Ghana’s most distinguishing geographic features is the Volta River, on which the Akosombo dam was built. Construction of the dam began in 1961 and commercial production of electricity started in 1965. The damming of the Volta created the enormous Lake Volta, which occupies a sizeable portion of Ghana’s south eastern territory. Lake Volta is the largest artificially created lake (by surface area) in the world.
Population and People
Ghana’s current population is estimated to be about 25.1 million (24.6 million in 2010) with females forming 51.2% of the total population. According to the 2010 population census results, the population density is 103 persons per square kilometre with the greatest concentration in the Greater Accra and Central Regions. The average population growth rate of Ghana is estimated at 2.19% per annum. At this rate it is estimated that it will take approximately 28 years for the population of Ghana to double.
Ghana’s population can be said to be a youthful one, with about 61.7% of the population falling between the ages of 15 and 65 years, and 71% of this range being economically active. The age structure of the country’s population is basically shaped by the effects of high fertility and decreasing mortality rates. The average life expectancy in Ghana is 65 years (62 years for males and 67 years for females).
There are several ethnic groups, each with its own unique culture and way of life. The official language and mode of communication is English, which is taught in all schools. The major ethnic groups in Ghana include the Akans (the Akyem, Ashanti, Kwahu, Akuapem, Fante, Bono and others), who form about 47.5% of the country’s total population. Other ethnic groups are the Ga-Dagme (7.4%), Ewes (13.9%), Mole-Dagbani (16.6%), Guan (3.7%), Gurma (5.7%), Grusi (2.5%), Mande (1.1%) and others (1.4%).
The people of Ghana are known to be very hospitable people, and this unique trait spans across all the ethnic groups.
The freedom of Ghanaians to practise their religious worship of choice is reflected in the following distribution: Christianity forms 71.2% (Catholic – 13.1%, Protestant – 18.4%, Pentecostal/ Charismatic – 28.3%, others – 11.4%), Islamic worship (17.6%), traditional worship (5.6%), other religions (0.8%) and no religion (5.3%).
(Source: 2010 Population and Housing Census Report)
A SPACE AND PLACE TO LIVE AND PROSPER
Visitors and investors who arrive on the shores of tropical Ghana, situated in a strategic position on the west coast of the Gulf of Guinea, are used to being greeted with “Akwaaba” – You are welcome!
This hospitable nation has a proud record of not only being one of the most important nations in the African continent for its independence in 1957. but is also credited with showing the way toward peace and the stability of democracy.
Apart from the largest artificial lake in the world – Lake Volta, the country is also the proud home of the only tropical rain forest walkway in Africa – the Kakum canopy walkway.
The appreciation of the role of Ghana in the African continent can probably best be described by the fact that Ghana is the first and only African country to have welcomed the monarch of the United Kingdom. Queen Elizabeth, and three American presidents on state visits.
On March 23, 1998 over half a million people gathered in Independence Square to see former President Bill Clinton and in February 2008 the former President George W. Bush visited Ghana.
In July 2009, the President of the United States, Barack Obama visited Ghana on his first visit to sub-Saharan Africa to highlight Ghana as a beacon of democracy and progress on the continent.
More than 25 million inhabitants of Ghana with a rich cultural history live in ten regions, which extend from the warm and relatively dry south-east coast to the hot and humid south-west and hot and dry north.
The lively and bustling metropolis of Accra is home to Kotoka International Airport while Tema Port facilitates oil import and export operations, part of a flourishing international trade.
Kurnasi, the second largest city in Ghana. is located in the vicinity of Lake Bosumtwi, a natural lake. in a rain forest region and is also called the “Garden City”. It is the hub of exports of gold. hard wood and cocoa and is home to Guinness Ghana.
To the south-west of the twin city of Sekondi-Takoradi is full of seams with the development as a result of the discovery and marketing of substantial oil deposits.
Ghana has a well-developed infrastructure as regards electricity, water, roads, airports and ports. Readily available and accessible services such as water and electricity add to a favorable climate for investment. In a developing country it is clear that much more needs to be done and the development of the infrastructure is one of the priorities of the national development strategy.
A global driver directing investments such as corruption perception and the perception of the ease of doing business is and will continue to be a high priority. As a developing country, we realise that much more needs to be done and infrastructure is high on the agenda of the national development strategy.
We invite you to Ghana as an investor.
There is a long list of small, local and global, large and medium-sized businesses that have decided to invest in Ghana and are still here and are excited that they took that bold step.
We invite you to join them.