Ghana News Agency (Accra) – The National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) has said it will ensure all government projects and programmes go through a cost-benefit analysis to safeguard crucial investments in the country’s infrastructure.
Speaking at a day-long workshop on the Ghana Priorities Project in Accra, Dr Kodjo Mensah-Abrampa said the cost-benefit analysis was being pursued within the framework of the Ghana Priorities Project, which was a collaboration between the NDPC and the Copenhagen Consensus Centre (CCC).
The aim of Ghana Priorities is to provide the government and the international donor community with a systematic process to help prioritise the most effective policy solutions and help Ghana to accelerate the achievement of the National Development Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Its sole mission is to promote the use of data and cost-benefit analysis for policy decisions.
Dr Mensah-Abrampa said the NDPC had received the findings of a research team consisting of renowned Ghanaian and international economists over the past 24 months, in collaboration with the National Development Planning Commission and the Ministry of Planning.
He said the team analysed the social, economic and developmental cost and benefits of about 80 policy interventions on health, education, agriculture, infrastructure and sanitation.
A forum for an eminent technical panel discussion was to be organised for the presentation of the research documents by the researchers and reviewed by the technical panel, he said. Passing every policy, key programme and project of government through a cost-benefit analysis will enable them to assess their efficiency.
Dr Mensah-Abrampa said this will give policymakers the opportunity to relate alternatives and make choices.
“In that sense, it makes it easier for the decision-makers to take a decision promptly and wisely, backed by scientific reasons to make a choice,” the director general said.
In his presentation on the theme “Ghana Priorities – Our Journey, Our Results, The Way Forward”, Dr Felix Addo-Yobo, director of development policy for the NDPC, said that, just like in other countries, the scope of problems in Ghana exceeded resources available to address them. “This requires hard choices about where to invest first,” he said.
Even if Ghana had more than enough resources, it could not do everything at one go and needed to prioritise, he argued.
Dr Addo-Yobo said the Ghana Priorities research project explored the smartest solutions to help Ghana, covering themes from poverty and health to education, infrastructure and gender equality.