As a team of International Monetary Fund (IMF) staff prepares to meet government’s Economic Team this week, Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta has hinted that high on the agenda will be the need to change some conditions to meet the new government’s fiscal policies.
According to him, it is imperative for such adjustments since it will guarantee economic development under the Nana Akufo administration.
Speaking to some journalists, Mr. Ofori Atta was of the view that the meeting will produce a good result since this is the first time such a programme has spanned over two governments.
“The IMF programme is firmly on course and we remain committed to successfully conclude the last year of the prgramme. However this happens to be the first time where an IMF programme has spanned two governments,” he said.
He pointed out that the unique nature of the period makes it important for some review and adjustments since the government will operate under a new fiscal policy regime.
“We will need to sit down with the IMF to discuss how well the programme fits within our stated goals and objectives and discuss and agree on any tweaking that we may do going forward, he said stressing that the review grant government the fiscal space needed to implement its economic policies.
Citing the need to get macroeconomic indicators stable, Mr. Ofori Atta maintained that government has some commitments to meet by providing the one-district-one factory, as well as one million dollars per constituency pledge.
He argued that the government will require some fiscal space to implement such policies.
“Clearly we have issues of certain areas and commitments that we have brought to the table, and all of those will be considered as we revamp what we all need to do to ensure that fiscal consolidation is not derailed in any manner,” he said.
The IMF programme
The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved a three-year arrangement under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) for Ghana in an amount equivalent to US$918 million in support of the authorities’ medium-term economic reform programme.
The programme aims to restore debt sustainability and macroeconomic stability to foster a return to high growth and job creation, while protecting social spending.
The Executive Board’s decision enabled an immediate disbursement of about US$114.8 million.
As part of the conditions, Ghana was expected to practice zero percent financing from the central bank as well as remove subsidies in some areas and cut down expenditure.
By: Vivian Kai Lokko/Lawrence Segbefia/citibusinessnews.com/Ghana