The 2018 budget allocation has been presented on the floor of parliament. Finance minister, Ken Ofori Atta has highlighted various measures government is putting in place to boost the economic between 2018 to 2019.
The budget, which was themed "putting Ghana to work", saw government spell out its plans for 2018.
Highlights of their plans include the rollout of the Akufo-Addo Programme For Economic Transformation (Aapet), initiatives to support the financial and energy sector, measures to increase revenue among others.
Although the budget touch on several crucial issues, there are some issues that some Ghanaians thought could be worth mentioning.
1. Ghana's dying fish stock
The depleting fish stock in Ghana is reported to be getting worse by the day following erratic weather patterns. Minister for fisheries and aquaculture has revealed that 60 percent of the fish we consume are all imported and that the 40 percent are mostly hard to come by.
Ghana in 2016 imported $135 million worth of fish because of the reduction in the country’s fish stock. One would have thought that government would factor in ways of injecting capital into the dying industry so as to boost production but this was never the case with the 2018 budget.
2. Fight against cybercrime
One of the major risks facing Ghana has been the menace of cybercrime. Statistics show that Ghana loses 60 million dollars every year to cybercrime. In fact president of the republic, Nana Ado Danquah Akufo-Addo has hinted of special policies to fight cybercrime but little or nothing was said about this in the 2018 budget read by the finance minister.
3. Terrorism and domestic security
Ghana was recently blacklisted by some European countries as a high-risk area when it comes to security.
Surrounded by countries which suffered the brunt of terrorist attacks, one would have thought that the 2018 budget will spell out budgetary allocations for the anti-terrorist task force initiated in the erstwhile Mahama regime but nothing or little was said about this.
4. Funds for terminal illnesses
One major issue that one would have thought could be tackled in the budget is the sad matter of terminal illnesses.
Checks at the various public hospitals indicate that most persons suffering terminal illnesses like cancer have to resort to funding their own lab results which are way too expensive.
Finance minister did fairly well with the issue of vaccines but he could have done better with plans to save Ghanaians suffering from terminal illnesses.
5. Allocation for persons with disability
The government in the 2017 budget spelled out various tax incentives for young entrepreneurs but what about persons with disability?
One would have thought that government will introduce special tax holidays for companies who employ persons with disability so as to improve upon the social inclusion that the society of persons with disability call for.
Are there other crucial things you think government failed to address in the budget? Your thoughts are most welcome.
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