With the support of China and the Paris Club, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is confident that the government will be able to reach a final deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) by the end of March.
A group from China’s Eximbank was sent to Accra over the weekend, according to President Akufo-Addo, to meet with representatives of the Ministry of Finance and examine the prospect of restructuring the nation’s debt.
Ghana owes around $13 billion in Eurobonds and $4 billion in bilateral loans, of which $1.7 billion is owed to China alone, according to the International Institute of Finance, as of September 2022.
Three weeks ago, President Akufo-Addo pleaded with Germany to persuade China to join the Credits Committee under the Paris Club Common Framework to handle Ghana’s efforts to restructure its external debt.
In light of Ghana’s unmanageable debt levels, which have forced debt restructuring attempts, the German government has declared its willingness to help the country deal with its challenging economic issues.
President Akufo-Addo said, “Like the rest of the world, Ghana acknowledges that its economy is in considerable difficulty.” He was speaking at an annual event that allows various foreign diplomats to exchange greetings, interact with one another, and strengthen the bonds of friendship, cooperation, and goodwill between Ghana and their respective countries and organizations.
According to the President, the budget created for the 2022 fiscal year was mishandled, upsetting the sustainability of the debt and the balance of payments and further exposing the underlying flaws in the Ghanaian economy.
While the government continues to work on the medium- to long-term structural changes that are at the core of the country’s goal of building a resilient and robust Ghanaian economy and building a Ghana beyond Aid, Ghana has turned to the IMF to repair its public finances and restore the balance of payments in the short term.
President Akufo-Addo stated that he was convinced that the government would conclude a $3 billion stimulus package with the IMF because the government was able to reach a Staff Level Agreement with the Fund in record time in December of last year as part of fulfilling the challenging but highly successful Domestic Debt Exchange Programme. He claimed that would pave the way for Ghana’s economy to rebound strongly.
The President stated that in order to make this deal happen and on time, the government hoped that all of Ghana’s allies will provide their words of encouragement to the Fund.
The government has developed a seven-point agenda, which is outlined in the post-COVID-19 program for economic growth, as part of attempts to reset the economy and restore stability, according to him. This agenda is intended to accelerate economic transformation and restore macroeconomic stability.
The program, according to President Akufo-Addo, has a number of objectives that aim to mobilize domestic revenue, rationalize and streamline spending, increase local productive capacity, promote and diversify exports, protect the weak and poor, expand digital infrastructure, and implement structural public sector reforms.
According to him, the government is aware that the fiscal changes it plans to make in the coming years for the economy’s sustainability, recovery, and eventual transformation will cause palpable reactions, but it is confident that, as it has in the past, “we shall turn this crisis into an opportunity to restore not just the short-term problems, but the long-term structural problems.”
He claimed that COVID-19’s crippling consequences have increased the world’s interconnectedness more than before. As a result, he utilized the occasion to once again express Ghana’s gratitude to the diplomats’ home nations and governments for their support of the country.
Additionally, he expressed Ghana’s gratitude to nations like Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, Italy, India, Japan, Malaysia, Morocco, Netherlands, Norway, China, Russia, Serbia, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Turkey, US, UK, and others for their support of scholarship and training programs in areas like leadership, governance, arts and culture, medicine, security agriculture, technology, health, and trade, among others.
It is much appreciated that these nations supported the world throughout the epidemic the president mentioned by providing vaccines, personal protective equipment, and other types of cooperation.
The President declared that Ghana would continue to be aware of its obligation to support the political and economic unification of her area and the entire continent.
He emphasized that intra-African commerce holds a significant portion of the potential for African nations to flourish together.
Source: Ghana Web