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IMF team visits Ghana, rising debt high on agenda

June 21, 2018, 11:58 a.m.

The government is confident that the IMF should be satisfied with efforts to reduce the country’s rising debts even as the Fund’s team makes a visit to Ghana.

The latest review of Ghana’s performance under the IMF program largely pointed to satisfactory performances except the need to deal with the rising public debt stock.

Even though Ghana’s debt grew from 122.6 to 142.5 billion cedis between 201 6 and 2017, the debt as a ratio to the total value of goods and services, dropped from 73.4% to 69.8% between the one year period.

The Country Director of the IMF, Natalia Koliadina at the CEOs summit in Accra last month, stressed the need for Ghana to reduce her debt levels.

The team from the IMF visiting Ghana will be in town for about two weeks.

This trip has become apparent following the need to assess the implementation over the last six months.

It is also necessary for government officials to meet the Fund as the Finance Minister prepares to present the midyear budget review to Parliament next month.

The Chairman of Parliament’s Finance Committee, Dr. Mark Assibey Yeboah, told Citi Business News efforts have been made to convince the Fund of progress to reduce the debt to GDP ratio to appreciable levels.

“There is more work to do because when a country reaches debt distress levels, there are consequences…it is a major area of concern and so we should ensure that we borrow into productive sectors,” he said.

Meanwhile, the team will meet Parliament’s Finance Committee next week Tuesday to discuss key issues on the economy.

Ghana entered into the agreement with the IMF for economic assistance of 918 million dollars.

So far, the Fund has disbursed 764.1 million dollars, and the remainder is expected to be released after the seventh and eighth reviews.

The agreement will end in December this year with the review to be completed in April next year [2019].