July 13, 2024
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Finance Minister to present Mid-Year Budget Review on July 25, 2023

The Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, will present the Mid-Year Budget Review to Parliament tomorrow July 25, 2023. Joy Business is learning that there will be no supplementary budget.

It is coming at a time the economy has witnessed some improvement after experiencing a turbulent period in 2022.

From the July 2023 Summary of Economic and Financial Data by the Bank of Ghana, the indicators show a remarkable improvement in the economic fundamentals of the country. Many believe it is due to the International Monetary Fund Programme that has helped bring some stability to the economy.

The cedi has stabilised against the dollar and the other major foreign currencies, whilst the rapid increase in inflation has been curtailed.  Lending rates have also been declining.

Again, Ghana recorded a trade surplus of $1.77 billion in the first six months of 2023, according to figures from the Bank of Ghana.

The Mid-Year Budget Review is likely to focus on policies to entrench economic stability and promote growth.

Economy recovering

Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, had reiterated that the Ghanaian economy was recovering gradually and will soon achieve stability.

According to him, recent macroeconomic indicators suggest that the economy is on the path of stability.

“I think the currency is a lot more stable, treasury bill rates have moved from 35% to 20 something percent. The Domestic Debt Exchange Programme was very difficult for us as a country but I think [there was] the need to do it and improve it”.

“So you can see some stability and we are grateful for that. There is a lot of work ahead and really we need to remain focused as Ghanaians and we move ahead,” he added.

The Finance Minister also recognised the dramatic change since the country went to the IMF for support to stabilise the economy.

“We got the Fund approval in record time. We got three times our quota which is unprecedented. We also were able to front-load it so that we may get $1.2 billion this year, which is good. Within three days of the approval also it was disbursed to us”.

IMF Mission Chief to Ghana, Stephane Roudet, also expressed optimism that the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, and his team are on track to revive Ghana’s economy.

According to him,the Ghanaian economy is showing signs of stabilisation, with softening inflation, an increase in international reserves, and a less volatile exchange rate.

This indeed manifested in a strong Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate of 4.2% in the first quarter of 2023. The Ghana Statistical Service data further revealed a positive development in the country’s real GDP, with a 1.1 percentage points increase over the previous quarter’s record by 0.3 percentage points.

Ghana on course for successful completion of first IMF review

The Finance Minister had also earlier indicated that the country was on course for the successful completion of its first review in November 2023 and the subsequent disbursement of an additional $600 million.

“We expect to finalize an MoU with our official bilateral creditors before the first review of the IMF Programme is completed in November 2023.  We have also started engaging our private creditors to seek relief on external commercial debt.”

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