President Akufo-Addo’s administration is discussing a possible extension of the country’s programme with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
This was revealed by Monitoring and Evaluation Minister, Dr. Anthony Akoto Osei in a recent interview.
He said even though the deal has not been finalized yet, discussions are far advanced.
Ghana’s three-year agreement with the IMF will see the disbursement of a total of 918 million dollars (USD 918,000,000), to the West African country.
The programme aims to restore debt sustainability and macroeconomic stability in the country; to foster a return to high growth and job creation, while protecting social spending.
Ghana has so far received a total of about US$464.6 million as disbursements from the IMF.
The latest was on September 28, 2016.
“Originally the programme was expected to end on April, 2018 but I know they are discussing extending it to December 2018 that may be coming at the request of government not the IMF. They can’t do that. The time is too short for now. So the government thought that it may be useful to end in December rather than in April,” Dr. Akoto Osei told Accra-based Citi FM.
“That is a proposal until the mission that came to do the assessment come back to government. Once they discuss it then there will be another meeting to formally make the request. The government has discussed that possibility with the IMF but nothing has been signed yet,” he added.
Senior Minister, Yaw Osafo Marfo during his vetting before the Appointments Committee of Parliament hinted that the new administration will review the deal.
According to him, the programme squeezes out “fiscal space out of the economy” and therefore needs a review.
“We will certainly review the IMF programme. The current state of the programme squeezes the fiscal space out of the economy, but our manifesto needs physical space to implement,” he said
He added: “Most of the targets set under the programme have been missed already and so the IMF themselves will be raising questions even if we don’t do anything about it. The fiscal deficit was thought to be 5% but from what I am seeing from the Bank of Ghana, we are doing around 8%, so we will certainly review the programme.”