October 1, 2023

Ghana’s consumer inflation rose to 54.1% year-on-year in December, up from 50.3% the previous month and its highest level in 22 years, driven by fuel, utilities and food, the statistics office said on Wednesday.

The West African gold, oil and cocoa producer is battling its worst economic crisis in a generation.

Its cedi currency slumped last year, fuelling inflation, as government spending cuts and central bank interest rate hikes failed to tame price rises.

December’s inflation reading is the highest since April 2001, when it was at 59.7%.

Prices rose the most in the category of housing, water, eletricity, gas and other fuels, up 82.34% year-on-year.

Furnishings and household equipment came second at 71.52%, followed by transport at 71.42%. Food and non-alcoholic beverages inflation was at 59.71% year-on-year.

Ghana approached the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in July to ask for financial help after soaring prices and economic hardship spurred street protests.

A staff-level agreement with the IMF for a $3 billion, three-year support package was secured in December. Debt restructuring is a condition to access the funds.

The government has launched a domestic debt exchange programme, and said earlier on Wednesday that negotiations with local pension funds on the terms were ongoing.

It also asked to restructure its bilateral debt under the G20 common framework platform on Tuesday.

Reporting by Christian Akorlie Writing by Sofia Christensen Editing by Alexander Winning and Estelle Shirbon

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