Economic Set-Up of Accra
The economically active population of AMA is estimated to be 823,327. However, the daily influx of people from dormitory towns makes the figure higher than estimated. It is worthwhile to state that the estimated figure of all the economically active population who dwell within the Metropolis excludes the workers of both formal and informal sectors who commute daily to engage in various economic activities.
Accra is a major centre for manufacturing, marketing, finance, insurance, transportation and tourism. It has about 350 major industrial establishments, a Central Bank, 9 Commercial Banks (with 81 Branches), 4 Development Banks (with 19 Branches), 4 Merchant Banks (with 7 Branches), 3 Discount Houses, 1 Home Finance Mortgage Bank, Building Societies, a Stock exchange, 218 Foreign Exchange Bureaux, 9 Finance Houses, 9 Insurance Companies, 12 Insurance Brokerage Firms, 2 Savings and Loans Companies and a host of Real Estate Developers. The road network in the Metropolis is about 1117.89 km made up of 918.10 km paved and 199.8 km of unpaved roads.
There are over 50,506 identified residential properties and about 4,054 commercial/Industrial/mixed properties with a total rateable value of ¢1,384,901,377,745.00. There are also 29 markets, 36 facilities for both on – street and off-street parking and over 120,000 units of wholesale, retail and other self-employed businesses as well as several facilities for the promotion of sports, recreation and many tourist centres.
Sectors of the economy
The sectors of AMA economy consist of Primary Sector (farming, fishing, mining and quarrying), Secondary Sector (manufacturing, electricity, gas, water, construction) and Tertiary Sector (Wholesale trade, retail trade, hotel, restaurant, transportation, storage, communication, financial intermediation, real estate service, public administration, education, health and other social services). As an urban economy the service sector is the largest, employing about 531,670 people. The second largest, secondary sector, employs 22.34% of the labour force (that is 183,934 people). Accra has 114,198 of its labour unemployed, making an unemployment rate of 12.2%.
Sector Employment of the AMA Economy
Primary Sector Sec. Sector Tertiary Sector Total
Number 107,723 183,934 531,670 823,327
% 13.08 22.34 64.58 100
Primary production, the smallest economic sector of Accra, employs 91, 556. As a Metropolitan area with a coast settlement entity, the predominant primary economic activities are fishing and urban agriculture. Fishing takes charge of about 77.8% of production labour making the largest in the sector.
Employment Composition of the Primary Production
SUB-SECTOR FIGURE PERCENTAGE
Urban agriculture 20,342 22.2
Fishing 71,214 77.8
TOTAL 91,556 100
This is practised mostly by families, often without the benefits of modern methods of production. Farming in Accra is a typical urban farming system growing varieties of vegetables including okro, garden eggs, tomatoes, carrots, cucumber, cabbage, cauliflower, and lettuce.
The volume of production of these crops is negligible and declining. The increasing land value in Accra is resulting in change use of urban agriculture land to commercial and economic purposes.
Poultry production is constrained by the high cost of feed. The metropolis has a number of domestic animals such as sheep and goats, which depend on the natural vegetation for feed. However, large quantities of meat and various dairy products are imported from neighbouring countries and abroad to supplement local production.
The fishing industry is the most important sub-sector where 10% of the catch is exported and the rest consumed locally. The main types of fish range from red fish, red bullet, and herrings to sardines, tuna, yellow fish and grouper.
There are also significant quantities of shrimps, lobsters and sole. The industry is characterised by extreme seasonableness (June – September) especially in the case of herrings and sardines. As a result of lack of storage facilities, prices tend to drop during the peak fishing season, resulting in the under-utilisation of the fishing resources.
The bulk of the marine catch during the season is by the small canoe fishermen who have little or no link with credit institutions to support the expansion of their businesses.
Fishing operations take place close to the shore throughout the year, and there is clear indication of the depletion of fish stock in the near future. The operations are prominent at Jamestown, La, Teshie, Nungua and Chorkor fishing shores.
The diagrame below shows the sector employment by AMA economy: