Consumer spending, represented by domestic VAT collections and retail sales, showed a mixed performance in May 2022, compared to the corresponding period in 2021.
According to the Bank of Ghana, domestic VAT collections increased by 30.6% on an annual basis to 700.12 million yen from 536.10 million yen.
Cumulatively, total domestic VAT for the first five months of 2022 rose 15.6% to 3.153 billion yen from 2.728 billion yen in the corresponding period last year.
In contrast, retail sales fell 6.0% (year-on-year) to ¢107.90 million in May 2022, down from GH¢114.78 million recorded during the same period in 2021 .
On a month-to-month basis, retail sales fell 11.7% in May 2022 from 122.20 million yen in the previous month.
The relative moderation in retail sales, according to the Central Bank, largely reflects weaker consumer demand over the review period. However, in cumulative terms, retail sales for the first five months of 2022 increased by 5.0%.
Activities in the manufacturing subsector, measured by the evolution of direct tax collection and private sector workers’ contributions to the Social Security and National Insurance (SSNIT) pension scheme (level 1), improved in May 2022.
Total direct taxes collected increased by 36.0% (year-on-year) to reach ¢1.994 billion in May 2022, compared to ¢1.466 billion recorded in the corresponding period of 2021.
Cumulatively, total direct taxes collected for the first five months of 2022 increased by 20.3% to ¢10.815 billion, compared to ¢8.993 billion for the same period in 2021.
In terms of contributions from the different tax sub-categories, income tax (PAYE and self-employed) accounted for 51.6%, corporation tax accounted for 36.8%, while “other tax sources” contributed 11.6%.
Activities of the construction sector
Activity in the construction subsector, represented by the volume of cement sales, decreased by 25.7% (year-on-year) in May 2022 to 264,619.73 tonnes, from 356,016 .77 tonnes recorded a year ago.
On a monthly basis, total cement sales fell by 9.1% in May 2022, compared to the 291,036.67 tonnes recorded in April 2022.
Cement sales for the first five months of 2022 decreased by 12.2% to 1,556,916.30 tons, compared to 1,773,091.21 tons for the same period of 2021.
The decline in total cement sales was due to a slowdown in construction activities during the reporting period.
Transport sector activity, as measured by new vehicle registrations by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA), fell 20.5% to 17,011 in May 2022 from 21,389 vehicles registered during of the corresponding period of 2021.
Cumulatively, vehicles registered by the DVLA in the first five months of 2022 fell by 4.1% to 134,402 from 140,082 registered a year ago.
Industrial electricity consumption
Industrial electricity consumption decreased slightly by 0.6% year-on-year during the period under review.
Industries consumed 264.71 gigawatts of electricity in May 2022, compared to 266.25 gigawatts recorded for the corresponding period in 2021.
On a monthly basis, the electricity consumed by industries in May 2022 decreased by 2.4%, compared to the 271.23 gigawatts used in April 2022.
However, in cumulative terms, the electricity consumed by industries for the first five months of 2022 increased by 5.6% to 1,348.23 gigawatts, compared to 1,276.70 gigawatts for the corresponding period a year ago. .
Passenger arrivals at the airport
International tourist arrivals increased in May 2022 by 65.2% to reach 71,660 tourists, compared to a similar period in 2021.
Compared to April 2022, tourist arrivals increased by 6.9%.
For the first five months of 2022, there were 309,827 tourist arrivals, compared to 179,345 for the corresponding period in 2021, representing a growth of 72.8%.
The sharp increase in tourist arrivals year-on-year reflects the easing of travel restrictions during the reporting period.
Activity of ports and harbors
International trade at the country’s two main ports (Tema and Takoradi), measured by loaded container traffic for inbound and outbound containers, declined during the review period.
Total container traffic decreased by 14.0%, year-on-year, to 62,036 in May 2022, compared to 72,156 for a similar period in 2021.
In cumulative terms, total container traffic for the first five months of 2022 fell by 12.3% to 285,496, compared to 325,680 for the corresponding period last year.
The BoG said the relative decline in port activity was due to a slowdown in international trade activity during the review period amid ongoing geopolitical tensions.