Data from the Ghana Statistical Service, GSS, indicates that the shock caused by the COVID-19 pandemic had considerable impacts on Ghanaian businesses, forcing many firms to shut down.
According to the data, the accommodation and food sector, for example, saw over 29,000 businesses closing down during the lockdown period with about 17 of those businesses remaining closed in May and June.
Giving further highlights at a press briefing in Accra on the true extent of closures of businesses months after movement restrictions were lifted, Government Statistician, Prof. Samuel Kobina Annim said that, a similar trend was observed for businesses in agriculture, trade and other sectors.
“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. And after the president lifted the restrictions, we still saw 14,946 manufacturing firms that had closed down in May and June. 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 said.
He also stated that, the agriculture sector also saw 14,636 businesses closing down during the lockdown period, with 5,157 of those businesses remaining closed in May and June.
In terms of trade, 75,790 businesses closed down during the lockdown period, with 27,227 of those businesses remaining closed in May and June.
The data also showed that other services saw 150,643 businesses closing during the lockdown period, with 96,276 remaining closed in May and June.
Government Statistician Prof. Samuel Kobina Annim further noted that, about 770,000 workers (25.7% of the total workforce), had their wages reduced and about 42,000 employees were laid off during the country’s COVID-19 partial lock-down.
It will be recalled that the Ghana Statistical Service, in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme, UNDP, and the World Bank conducted a Business Tracker Survey to track the impact of the novel Coronavirus pandemic on businesses in Ghana.