The Minister for Information, Honourable Kojo Oppong Nkrumah has said that the 2022 Budget Statement and Economic Policy responds to concerns of youth unemployment in the country.
According to him, the spate of youth unemployment in the country brought on by the coronavirus global pandemic has compelled government to propose policies that would create avenues for young men and women to find decent jobs in both the public and private sectors of the country.
He made the remark during the 2022 budget debate on the floor of Parliament yesterday.
The Minister argued that as of 2016, when the Mahama-led administration was leaving office, economic growth had come to as low as 3.4%. Until the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Akufo-Addo Government was growing the economy at an average of 7% year on year.
He explained that because of the abysmal growth, a lot of young people got employed in the private rather that the public sector.
He added that the Government of Ghana under the leadership of President Akufo-Addo ensured that at least about 300,000 young Ghanaians were recruited in the public sector both for those who are paid by the Controller and Accountant General and from Non-Subverted Agencies.
“This is very different from the days we were told that because we were down to the bone and had gone to the IMF, we couldn’t have recruited people into the public sector. But what is even exciting is that in this 2022 budget, this administration has made available GH$1billion to support young men and women who want to embark on their own business known as the YouStart initiative. And so, Mr. Speaker, the most important issue on the minds of Ghanaians is being answered by the 2020 budget,” Hon. Oppong Nkrumah argued.
The Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta on November 17, 2021 presented the 2022 budget to Parliament. The budget themed: “Building a Sustainable Entrepreneurial Nation: Fiscal Consolidation and Job Creation”, emphasized a post-COVID-19 economic recovery agenda, centered on youth entrepreneurship.
Accordingly, the YouStart initiative was announced in the budget as the vehicle for supporting young entrepreneurs to gain access to capital, training, technical skills and mentoring to launch and operate their businesses.
The initiative is expected to create some 1 million jobs and support young entrepreneurs to develop commercially viable businesses.
Source: MOI (PR unit)