In collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Bank, the Ghana Statistical Service’s Ghana Business Tracker which aims at “providing critical information to help the Government of Ghana, development partners, and other organizations monitor the effects of the pandemic on businesses” revealed close to 300,000 business in the accommodation and food sector closed down during and post partial lockdown.
In a press briefing in Accra, Professor Samuel Kobina Annim explained that COVID-19 during and after the lockdown saw businesses either closing down temporarily or permanently across the length and breadth of the country.
“From a business closure point of view, during the lockdown period, specifically in the month of April, that is, when the government-imposed mobility restrictions on the first three weeks of the month of April, we saw 48,998 firms in the manufacturing sector that closed down,” Professor Kobina Annim aid.
“Also, 29,599 businesses in the accommodation and food sector closed down during the lockdown and 16, 965 businesses closed down in May and June,” he further added.
Wages and Employment
To add to this negative downturn, 770,124 workers representing 25.7% of the total workforce had their wages reduced. A total of 41,952 workers representing 1.4% of the total workforce lost their jobs during the partial lockdown. Workers in the accommodation and food sub-sector were mostly affected.
Despite the stimulus package granted by the government, nearly 131,000 businesses indicated that they had challenges accessing finance with more than over 60 per cent calling for subsidized interest rates.
Between March 2019 and March 2020, sales of businesses reduced by 26 percent and by 36 percent between April 2019 and April 2020.
Over 476,000 businesses experienced a decrease in the demand for their goods and services as a result of COVID-19 and its related responses. Only an estimated 26,000 businesses indicated an increase in their demand for goods and services throughout the partial lockdown.
The use of digital tools
Concerning internet usage and mobile money use during the period, less than 10 percent of businesses adopted or intensified the use of the internet for their operations. Also, nearly two-fifths of businesses adopted the use of mobile money for business transactions.
Data was collected between May 26 to June 17, 2020, and sampled from the Integrated Business Establishment Survey (IBES), Ghana Living Standard Survey (GLSS) and the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI)