Ghana’s economic gains not due to IMF program – Casely-Hayford

Business News of Saturday, 29 September 2018

Source: citinewsroom.com

2018-09-29

Sydney Casely-Hayford, Financial analyst

Financial analyst, Sydney Casely-Hayford believes Ghana’s current economic growth has nothing to do with its program with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

According to him, the macroeconomic achievements and the performance of the economy are solely due to the government’s efforts.

“The improvements that have been made by the current government in terms of macroeconomic statistics and performance are not because of the IMF program that we are running. In fact, it is in spite of the IMF program,” he said on Saturday on The Big Issue hosted by Selorm Adonoo on Citi FM/Citi TV.

About IMF program

Ghana entered into an extended credit facility with the IMF for economic assistance in 2015 to among other things help stabilize the Ghanaian economy for policy credibility.

The deal came with an initial funding support of 918 million dollars to be disbursed under eight tranches.

Under the agreement, the government was expected to implement some policy initiatives such as a freeze of public sector employment, reduction of the budget deficit, and zero financing of the budget deficit by the Bank of Ghana.

The assistance was however extended by a year.

The IMF after the 7th review of the program recently said Ghana’s growth prospects are strong but urged it to improve its revenue shortfalls.

The IMF also raised concerns over struggles in meeting set targets attributing it to the cedi depreciation as well as domestic and external factors.

Ghana has not succeeded with IMF

Meanwhile, Casely-Hayford on The Big Issue said Ghana is not out of the woods yet despite several years of receiving support from the IMF.

“My problem with the IMF and World Bank programs is that after all these decades, we have been from one IMF program to another yet don’t have a solution to our problems. Yes, warranted, government has not always met the targets that have been set and be able to achieve but still even as we sit now, the current program that we entered which was supposed to be a policy credibility program in exchange of which we got some $918 million, we haven’t seen anything because the problems we are facing are the same,” he said on The Big Issue.

On claims that the IMF program brings discipline, Casely-Hayford thinks otherwise.

“A lot of the time you are better off not being restricted by the IMF facility. Some people will tell you that the IMF brings in the discipline. No, the discipline doesn’t come with the IMF. The discipline comes with ourselves – our ability to be able to control the expenditure and be able to manage the facilities we have. IMF cannot chase you with a can to have financial discipline,” he added.

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