The Ministry of Finance has downplayed fears that the cedi’s current woes may deepen in the coming days.
[contextly_sidebar id=”YVZfORop9jZrdBLy42nfIfR1Sre7Inra”]The cedi over the past weeks has been struggling to stay afloat against major foreign currencies like the dollar, euro and pound.
For weeks the cedi has been depreciating significantly against the dollar, euro and pound and it appears this trend will not end anytime soon.
On the interbank forex market the cedi has lost about 12.05 percent of its value this year alone.
In January it lost about 1.235 percent in value against the dollar while in February it further lost 6.64 percent and has so far this month lost 4.53 percent in value against the dollar.
The story is no different in forex bureaus, for example last week Thursday at forex bureaus the US dollar was being sold at 3 cedis, 67pesewas this figure shot up to 3 cedis, 78pesewas by yesterday March 23, 2015.
But the Finance ministry tells Citi Business News the ongoing development is not out of place.
Deputy Minister of Finance Mona Quartey assures the cedi will stabilize against major trading currencies especially the dollar by the end of this month.
“Am not worried because while I have seen a lot of trading, I understand volatility, I understand that no market is stagnant, it must be dynamic, so exchange rate will move up and down as commodity prices will do the same. It is just that in Ghana when you see the cedi move up against the exchange rate, it does not come down when the exchange rate comes down but at least if we can stabilize it and I can see it stabilize in the near future where if we all remain calm and use the cedi in transactions things will normalize.”
According to her ‘Ghanaians must use more made in Ghana goods and cut down on imports which contribute to the depreciation of the currency.
This is one sure way to conserve the foreign currency, to be used only for essential imports, only which will see the cedi perform better or stabilize against the dollar, Euro and Pound’. She said.
But an economist Dr. Ebo Turkson has called on the Bank of Ghana to immediately put in place measures to help stabilize the Cedi from further depreciation.
“It comes with a lot of other challenges on our economy. Don’t forget that when the cedi is depreciating it affects our interest payment for those loans that we have contracted and will also be increased. It affects also the budget deficit by increasing it which causes the very problems that we are trying to contain and prevent, so it should be of concern to the government not forgetting about the fact that it also comes with imported deflation because goods that are imported and consumed in the country will also have an increase in prices so the central bank must come in with some interventions to help stabilize the situation.”
The Cedi last year lost in excess of 30% in value.
By: Norvan Acquah – Hayford/citifmonline.com/Ghana