Causes of Unemployment in Ghana And Solutions: Several nations around the world face the problem of unemployment. Even though unemployment affects developed economies, its impact on developing nations, particularly those in sub-Saharan Africa, is significantly greater. Poku-Boansi and Afranie (2011) report that the unemployment rate in Africa is 34.2%.
This implies that approximately one-third of the labor force in Africa is unemployed. Ghana, a powerful bloc in the west African region, is not wholly devoid of unemployment (particularly among adolescents).
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What effects does unemployment have?
Indeed, the effects of adolescent unemployment in Ghana have been observed. The political unrest and increase in social problems indicate that the situation is rapidly deteriorating. People who are unemployed for an extended period of time tend to lose faith in governments and democratic principles, and Ghana is no exception.
People frequently demonstrate and organize strikes to demand employment, opportunities, and an end to corruption and mismanagement of funds. Recently, students from the University of Ghana demonstrated along main avenues, demanding employment opportunities.
These actions progressively cause political instability and tension within the nation. Robbery, prostitution, and extortion, among other vices, are also fostered by the absence of employment opportunities. The rise in the unemployment rate will result in an increase in the crime rate, as individuals seek money by any means possible. As a result, social security is unquestionably jeopardized and chaos ensues in our country.
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Causes of unemployment in Ghana
1. Lack of Entrepreneurship Education: The dearth of entrepreneurship education is a contributory factor to unemployment in Ghana, as it hinders the ability of individuals to create private job opportunities or contribute to the economic development through business ventures.
Education in entrepreneurship equips individuals with the knowledge and skills necessary to identify business opportunities, launch new ventures, and create employment opportunities for others. Without appropriate education in this field, many would-be entrepreneurs may lack the confidence and knowledge to establish and manage their own businesses, resulting in a dearth of job creation in the economy.
Entrepreneurs frequently need access to capital and resources in order to launch and expand their enterprises. Without the appropriate education in entrepreneurship, individuals may not know how to access funding sources, compose effective business plans, or convey their ideas to potential investors, making it more difficult for them to secure the necessary funds to launch their ventures.
2. Lack of Capital: Among the millions of employable individuals who make up the unemployed population, only a small number have the ideas and talents necessary to launch businesses. Unfortunately, these few individuals lack access to the capital required to establish their business. Access to loans in Ghana is hampered in part by the absence of collateral.
In addition, the high interest rates charged by banks make it challenging for these individuals to timely repay their loans. Most banks are hesitant to lend to this group because they believe they are less likely to redeem the loan because they lack a lengthy or manageable employment history.
3. White-Collar Work Attitude: Most Ghanaians have only one objective after so many years of schooling: to obtain a white-collar job. White-collar occupations are formal positions in multinational corporations or reputable local businesses. Due to the high salaries and incentives that come with working for these companies, they are a passport to a prosperous existence. As a consequence, the majority of Ghanaians attend school with the expectation of obtaining a white-collar position.
As it turns out, there are fewer white-collar positions available than are needed. There are few businesses that can offer such employment opportunities, so the majority of the employable population would not be able to obtain them. This causes the majority of Ghanaians to wait for opportunities rather than seek blue- or pink-collar employment. As a result, many graduates and qualified individuals remain unemployed for extended periods, thereby increasing the national unemployment rate.
Very few industries, multinational corporations, and corporate organizations in Ghana are capable of employing the entire employable population. This is due to many factors, including the country’s economic situation, which has not yet attracted many multinational corporations, and the dearth of entrepreneurship education.
The absence of education in entrepreneurship Ghana has produced a greater number of job candidates than job creators. Thus, there are many individuals vying for the few available positions, but only a few establishing businesses that will generate additional employment opportunities.
Additionally, the educational system emphasizes the skills required to work in a company rather than the creation of new businesses. The dearth of vocational support, training facilities, and emphasis on the significance of entrepreneurial skills makes it more difficult for unemployed white-collar workers to start enterprises.
4. Lack of Skill: Lack of the proper talent set is one of the leading causes of unemployment in Ghana. The country’s free education system has helped reduce the illiteracy rate, but it has also lowered the caliber of education.
Consequently, there are more graduates who possess theoretical knowledge but are unable to apply it in practice. The dearth of skills required by corporate organizations makes it more difficult for employable individuals to obtain employment, resulting in unemployment. Sometimes, individuals with the necessary abilities and qualifications may be overqualified for the position and therefore unemployed.
The rigidity of the free education system also contributes to unemployment. The Ghanaian curriculum is rigid and unable to keep up with the world’s rapid development. The curriculum teaches obsolete or obsolete skills that have been replaced by computers and machinery. The job seekers are deemed unqualified and must remain unemployed until they acquire the necessary skill set.
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Solutions to Unemployment in Ghana
1. Favorable Economic Policies: Favorable economic policies can play a major role in lowering the unemployment rate in Ghana. Well-designed policies that promote economic growth, attract investment, and support job creation can create a more hospitable environment for the growth of businesses, thereby increasing employment opportunities.
Implementing policies that reduce bureaucratic obstacles, simplify regulations, and expedite the process of starting and operating a business can foster entrepreneurship and attract both domestic and foreign investment. This, in turn, can result in the establishment of more enterprises and, as a result, an increase in employment opportunities.
Policies that encourage industry diversification can lead to the expansion of sectors with the potential to generate more employment. By bolstering emerging industries and reducing reliance on a small number of industries, Ghana can create a more resilient economy and expand employment opportunities in a variety of disciplines. Small and medium-sized businesses contribute significantly to employment creation in numerous economies. Favorable policies that provide SME support, such as access to training, technology, and markets, can assist these businesses in expanding and creating more jobs.
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2. Support for Future Entrepreneurs: When entrepreneurs are supported and encouraged to launch and expand their businesses, they create new enterprises that require a labor force. As these businesses grow, they create more employment opportunities, thereby lowering the unemployment rate and providing numerous individuals with a means of subsistence. Supporting entrepreneurs in rural areas can revitalize local economies.
When individuals have the means and resources to establish enterprises locally, they can resolve the economic challenges rural communities experience, thereby reducing the need for rural residents to migrate to urban areas in pursuit of employment. By encouraging and supporting enterprises, Ghana can foster the growth of numerous industries and sectors.
Diversified economies are more resistant to economic fluctuations and less dependent on a single industry, which can reduce unemployment risks during economic downturns.
3. Review And Reform Of The Education System: Reviewing and reforming the education system could be a crucial solution to the unemployment problem in Ghana. A well-designed and effective education system can endow individuals with the skills, knowledge, and perspective they need to succeed in the labor market, encourage entrepreneurship, and contribute to the economic development of the nation.
Include entrepreneurship education in the curriculum at all educational levels. This will assist in instilling an entrepreneurial perspective and equipping students with the skills necessary to launch and manage businesses, thereby promoting job creation and decreasing reliance on formal employment alone.
Improve vocational training and technical education in order to prepare students for specific industries and occupations. A well-developed vocational education system can produce competent laborers capable of meeting the needs of a variety of industries, thereby fostering economic development and reducing unemployment.
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4. Create More Industries: Industries offer a substantial number of employment opportunities in a variety of sectors, including manufacturing, processing, and services. In the absence of a robust industrial base, the labor force has fewer employment opportunities, resulting in higher unemployment rates. Agriculture has historically been a pillar of Ghana’s economy. While agriculture is an essential industry, seasonal fluctuations and limited employment opportunities are common.
Due to the dearth of industries, many people may not have viable employment alternatives when agricultural activities are low. Due to the limited number of industries and employment opportunities, qualified laborers and professionals may look abroad for employment. The phenomenon of brain leakage can result in a lack of competent labor and impede the growth of new industries that require specialized knowledge and expertise.
In conclusion, unemployment in Ghana can be attributed to a combination of factors, including limited employment opportunities, underdeveloped industries, and a mismatch between the capabilities of the labor force and market demands. Inadequate entrepreneurship education and obstacles to starting and expanding enterprises also contribute to the issue. To effectively combat unemployment, Ghana requires a multifaceted approach.
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Implementing entrepreneurship education and vocational training can encourage self-employment and skill growth. Supporting aspiring entrepreneurs through favorable economic policies can result in the creation of new jobs and a diversification of industries. Moreover, infrastructure investments, export promotion, and labor market reforms can contribute to a more robust and dynamic job market.
Ghana can pave the way for sustainable economic development, increased employment opportunities, and a brighter future for its citizens by employing these solutions and nurturing an environment of innovation, inclusivity, and collaboration.
Edeh Samuel Chukwuemeka ACMC, is a Law Student and a Certified Mediator/Conciliator in Nigeria. He is also a Developer with knowledge in HTML, CSS, JS, PHP and React Native. Samuel is bent on changing the legal profession by building Web and Mobile Apps that will make legal research a lot easier.