Living Wage Series - Ghana - January 2018 - In Ghana Cedi, per Month

Living wages, Wages in context - Ghana

The Living Wage is based on the concept that work should provide an adequate income to cover the necessary living costs of a family. WageIndicator uses prices from the Cost of Living Survey to calculate Living Wage in more than 60 countries. The Living Wage is an approximate income needed to meet a family’s basic needs including food, housing, transport, health, education, tax deductions and other necessities.

The following table summarises the varying expenditure and income needs for the three commonly occurring family household compositions.

Expenditure and Living Wage calculation (monthly rates in Ghana Cedi)

  Typical family Standard family Single-adult
  from-to from-to from-to
Food 1060-1500 685-965 170-240
Housing 250-375 250-375 100-150
Transport 96-190 96-190 48-96
Health 100-150 100-150 25-38
Education 120-350 120-350 0
Other costs 81-130 63-100 17-26
Total Expenditure 1707-2695 1314-2130 360-550
Net Living Wage 898-1418 730-1183 360-550
Gross Living Wage 1090-1720 885-1430 435-665

Note: For more details see Living Wage FAQ.


Family Living Wages (monthly rates in Ghana Cedi)

There is not a single answer to what is the adequate cost of living. The result is complex, as the cost of living varies by household composition, location, and employment pattern. The following table presents the Living Wage estimates for a set of most common family household compositions and under different assumptions about working hours.

  from-to
Typical family (two parents + 4.2 children, 1.9 working) 1090-1720
Standard family (two parents + 2 children, 1.8 working) 885-1430
Two parents and two children, 2 working 795-1290
Two parents and two children, 1.5 working 1060-1720
Two parents and two children, 1 working 1590-2580
Two parents and three children, 1.9 working 950-1520
Two parents and four children, 1.9 working 1070-1680
Single-adult without children, 1 working 435-665

Note: Results in the table are rounded.


Living Wages in Context (monthly rates in Ghana Cedi)

The Minimum Wage is a national legally binding obligation on employers which often make no reference to a living standard. Living Wage describes the adequate living standard. The common goal of the many living wage campaigns currently taking place all over the world is to lift Minimum Wages levels to those of the Living Wages. WageIndicator presents Living Wages jointly with Minimum Wages, aiming to raise awareness concerning the remaining differences in levels. Living Wages are presented in context with other wage indicators including prevailing wages of workers over recent years.

  2015 2016 2017 2018
Minimum wage 130 189 238 261
Living Wage - Single Adult .-. .-. .-. 435-665
Living Wage - Typical Family .-. .-. .-. 1090-1720
Real wage of low-skilled worker 310-470 400-605 455-700 570-870
Real wage of medium-skilled worker 485-770 590-955 645-1060 640-995
Real wage of high-skilled worker 900-1450 1090-1790 1260-2110 1270-2030

Note: Table shows the lowest monthly Minimum Wage in a country, when available. Reported monthly earnings of workers in low-, medium-, and high-skilled occupations are obtained from the voluntary WageIndicator web survey on work and wages. Results in the table are rounded.


Food basket and food prices in Ghana Cedi

The food expenditure is the main component of Living Wage and it is determined by the price of food basket. The food prices are taken from WageIndicator Cost of Living Survey which collects the actual prices of all items necessary to calculate the Living Wage. The composition of the food basket is taken from the national food balance sheets published by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). The food basket is scaled to 2,100 calories per person per day that is the nutritional requirement for good health proposed by World Bank (Handbook on poverty and inequality, 2009).

Food itemGrams per dayEnergy (kcal)Price per kilo
Wheat, barley and cereals products 51 143 6-9
Rice 63 218 5-8
Meat (beef, pork, poultry) 38 43 7-12
Oils (soyabean, olive, palm) 14 126 6.5-8
Sugar (Raw Equivalent) 37 101 4-5
Maize and products 50 159 4-6
Milk - Excluding Butter 18 9 2.5-3
Vegetables, Other 19 6 4-6
Potatoes and products 0 0 5-8.5
Butter, Ghee 0 4 6-7
Groundnuts (Shelled Eq) 26 79 2.5-3.5
Pulses, Other and products 2 5 5.6-5.6
Cassava and products 425 461 2-2
Egg (price per 10 eggs) 2 3 5.8-7
Sunflowerseed Oil 0 1 9-10
Fish products 52 42 10-15
Beer 9 4 8-10
Sweeteners, Other 2 4 5-5
Beans 16 54 2.5-3.5
Sweet potatoes 10 9 5-12
Bananas 5 4 2-5
Soyabeans 0 0 4.5-9
Yams 314 314 4-5.5
Apples and products 3 1 5-5
Tomatoes and products 51 11 5-5
Onions 13 5 4-5
Oranges, Mandarines 45 14 1-2
Plantains 251 223 2.5-5
Peas 0 0 3-7
Roots, Other 66 57 5-5
Seeds and kernels 0 0 2.5-4
Wine 1 1 20-27
Cream 0 0 3-6
Olives (including preserved) 0 1 12-30
Honey 0 0 12-20
Citrus, Other 0 0 2-2
Lemons, Limes and products 4 1 1-3
Tea (including mate) 0 0 2.5-5
Grapefruit and products 0 0 4.5-4.5
Coffee and products 0 0 8.5-8.5


WageIndicator Living Wage background:

The WageIndicator Living Wage is set to provide acceptable living standard to a family of a particular size. WageIndicator presents Living Wages for several household types and working hours which reflect the most frequently found real situations in which people have to make a living: 1. Typical family Living Wage is a baseline estimate that respects the country specific conditions. Typical family is comprised of two adults and the number of children is given by country specific fertility rate (the average number of children a woman is expected to have during her lifespan). One adult is working full-time and the working hours of second adult are approximated by national employment rate. The total income earned by two adults paid living wage is sufficient to reach adequate living standard. 2. Standard family Living Wage is estimated for a family composed of two adults and two children (referred to as family 2+2). Living wage is calculated under different assumptions about working hours. These include that both adults work full-time (family employment rate is 2), or at least one adult works part-time or half-time (family employment rate is 1.8 and 1.5), or one adult does not work at all (i.e. patriarchal model with family employment 1). Alternatives refer to trade-offs between leisure and work and define what living wage represents. In every case the total income earned by two adults paid living wage is sufficient to reach adequate living standard. 3. Extended family Living Wage includes family with three or four children. One adult works full-time and the work intensity of second parent is approximated by national employment rate. 4. Individual Living Wage represents an acceptable standard of living for a single individual working full-time.

Data sources: WageIndicator Cost of Living Survey, World Bank Databank Fertility rate 2010-2014, ILO Estimated participation rate in 2017, FAO Food balance sheet in 2013.