The GH¢100 billion Ghana COVID-19 Alleviation and Revitalization of Enterprises Support (CARES) “Obaatanpa” programme is a three and half year comprehensive programme to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, return the country to a sustained path of robust growth and to create a more resilient and transformed economy. GhanaCARES is not the totality of Government’s economic development programme but rather; it represents the strategic and catalytic interventions that will foster a quicker recovery and boost our post-COVID economic transformation.
The programme was developed through extensive consultations between government and key stakeholders such as:
- The Economic Recovery Committee comprising of representatives from the Bank of Ghana, the Trades Union Congress, Ghana Employers Association, the Association of Ghana Industries, the Ghana Chamber of Commerce, private entrepreneurs, scholars and leading professionals.
- Social Partners including the Trade Union Congress, the Ghana Federation of Labour, the Ghana Employers Association
- Other Stakeholders such as the Ghana Bankers’ Association, Ghanaian professionals in the Diaspora and the Ghana West Africa Private Sector Coronavirus Platform (WAPSCON19) comprising the Private Enterprise Federation, the Ghana Healthcare Foundation, the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research, the Ghana American Chamber of Commerce, and the Ghana European Business Organization.
Ghana CARES is a two-phase programme that builds on the immediate actions already taken by Government under the Coronavirus Alleviation Programme (CAP). They are;
Phase 1: Stabilization of the economy (July –December 2020).
This phase is aimed at continuing to relieve hardships on Ghanaians by reducing the cost of basic services; ensuring food security; protecting businesses and workers; and further strengthening the health system. Specific measures to be undertaken by Government are described below:
1. Temporary reduction in the cost of basic services
2. Ensure food security
3. Support businesses and workers
4. Strengthen the health system
5. Pass urgent legislation
Phase 2: Revitalization and Transformation of the economy (2021 - 2023).
- Industrialization, Technology & Skills
- Inftrastructure & Housing
- Enhanced access to finance (e.g. Establishment of the Development Bank, Ghana, Venture Capital Trust Fund, Ghana Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending etc.)
- Improving the Business Environment and Supporting SMEs (e.g. Ghana Enterprises Agency, Ghana Investment Promotion Centre, Ghana Free Zones Authority etc.)
- Energy sector reforms (e.g. Implementation of the Energy Sector Recovery Programme, Cash Waterfall Mechanism “Delta Fund” etc.)
- Skills for Jobs (e.g. Skills training for unemployed people, institution of the National Unemployment Insurance Scheme etc.)
The GhanaCARES programme seeks to improve the lives and livelihoods of all Ghanaians by
- Building a stronger economy anchored on competitive import substitution in agriculture, garment, pharmaceutical and textiles;
- Ensuring food security and sufficiency;
- Providing local businesses and entrepreneurs especially the youth in strategic sectors with direct support to enhance growth;
- Supporting young persons in start-ups with interventions in the Technology and Digitalisation under CARES.
- Developing innovative revenue mobilization strategies that will boost burden-sharing and enhance delivery of social services in communities and localities.
- Attracting and retaining investments under CARES to expand employment opportunities for all Ghanaians, especially the youth.
- Participating Ministries, Department and Agencies have identified interventions and signed Implementation Compacts
- A Central Coordinating Unit at the Ministry of Finance as well as respective Delivery Units have been activated in each participating MDA
- Expertise of reputable private sector and policy management firms have been secured to support implementation
- Periodic implementation reports will be discussed at the Inter Ministerial Coordinating Committee chaired by H.E the President.
The GH¢100 billion Ghana CARES programme would be funded with spending and investment inflows from Government (GH¢30 billion) and the private sector i.e. both domestic and external (GH¢70 billion).
Implementation of Ghana CARES represents Government’s commitment to reforms and a new way of doing business, which will accelerate our progress towards prosperity, economic resilience and Ghana Beyond Aid. It will require attitudinal change (as spelt out in the Ghana Beyond Aid Charter) and a focus on disciplined implementation of our plans and programmes.
The programme would be implemented through collaboration between Government and the private sector using a rigorous Results Framework with Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-bound Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). The KPIs will be systematically monitored through regular activity reports as well as annual progress reports, which will be accessible to stakeholders via a common dashboard.
The GhanaCARES programme seeks to re-engineer the economy and build an industrialized and technologically advanced Ghana that is prosperous and beyond dependence on others. This falls directly in line with Ghana Beyond Aid’s objectives of creating a Wealthy, Inclusive, Sustainable, Empowered, and Resilient (W.I.S.E.R) Ghana.
A key focus of the Ghana CARES Programme is to support the private sector to become a powerful engine for job creation in Ghana. Ghana CARES will address the challenge of unemployment by stimulating the economy and supporting Ghanaian businesses and entrepreneurs, and through the aggressive pursuit of Foreign Direct Investments. The programme is targeted at creating 420,000 productive and decent jobs in the formal sector from 2021 to 2023.