President John Mahama has directed that immediate initiatives be taken to open discussions with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and other development partners in support of Ghana’s programme for stabilization and growth.
This was contained in a statement signed by the Minister of Communications, Dr. Edward Omane Boamah.
This comes a few weeks after Finance Minister, Seth Terpker, asked Parliament to approve a supplementary budget of more than 3 billion Cedis for the rest of the year.
It also follows months of uncertainty as to whether the government would fall on the Bretton Woods Institution to halt its economic decline and give it some fiscal space.
In its newly launched report after the Senchi Economic Forum, the government stated that:
“Going for an IMF programme provides a clean bill of health which may trigger disbursement,s not only from the IMF but also from other donors. It may also provide favourable signals to the market.”
The report concedes though that: “(Opting for an IMF program) would however, go with negotiated conditionalities.”
A Senior Economic Advisor to the President, Dr Nii Moi Thompson, on Friday, failed to rule out the option of an IMF Program for Ghana when pressed on the Citi Breakfast Show.
According to him, the announcement that Ghana was focusing on “home grown solutions” in addressing its economic challenges did not preclude opting for an IMF program.
“It’s on the table, it has not been ruled out, because in situations like this, you need to look at all the options,…lets me just make it clear that an IMF program has not been ruled out , it is a very much a part of the discussion. It’s an option,” he said.
Ghana’s economy has been characterized by economic decline over the past two years with lower output and high deficits, compounded by increasing inflation and a rapidly depreciating currency.
This situation, which an economist has described as a “Stagflation” has led to complaints of increased cost of living and triggered nationwide street protests.
By: Rabiu Alhassan/citifmonline.com/Ghana