Ghana’s decision to go to IMF has paid off – President Akufo-Addo

President Akufo-Addo has stated that his government’s decision to secure a 3 billion dollars extended credit facility with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in July 2022 has paid off looking at the rate of recovery of the Ghanaian economy since the facility was secured in 2023.

Addressing the managing director of the International Monetary Fund, Kristalina Georgieva, and her delegation at the Jubilee House on Sunday, 17 March 2024, when she paid a courtesy call on him as part of her two-day visit to Ghana, President Akufo-Addo said his administration will continue to implement sound economic policies as well as stay the cause with regard to the current IMF programme the country is executing.

“It is obvious that the decision we made in July 2022 to come and seek your support for the difficulty economic circumstances which we were involved in as far as I am concerned is a decision that has already paid off. It has paid off in terms of the clear turn around that we are seeing in our economy.

IMF boss Kristalina Georgieva

“The very dire circumstances in which we were at the time we took that difficult decision and where we are today is a very clear testimony of the fact that our decision to seek your support was a decision that was correct and we have had very positive benefits from it” President Akufo-Addo remarked.

“The stronger than predicted growth, the systematic decline in inflation in Ghana and the decline of interest rates, the relatively stable exchange rate which we have had for our currency which was deeply troubled at one stage; These are all important signals that our economy is stabilizing.

I believe that it is the cooperation that we have had from you and the association that we have had from the World Bank that has brought us to this point. That is a rescue mission and the more important matter for us now is that having laid the foundation, how we can now engineer the rapid growth which is the way in which the mass of our people can benefit from the development of our nation” President Akufo-Addo further remarked.

Confidence bouncing back

Managing Director of the IMF, Kristalina Georgieva, in her interaction with President Akufo-Addo, noted that it is clear to the IMF that confidence in the Ghanaian economy both domestically and externally is bouncing back. She observed that the world economy has surprisingly remained resilient and its growth rate has been stronger than predicted.

“For Ghana this year cannot be more decisive because it is the year to bring [back] confidence in Ghana domestically and internationally at the level it was before [the global economic challenges] or higher.

“It is possible because we are seeing a world economy that is slightly better, so the economy attitudes are better and the critical resource of money will go where confidence in the capacity of the country to perform is highest so Ghana can be at this place as it was before” Kristalina Georgieva said.

“We need to stay the cause, your growth is better than expected, your inflation is lower than expected, the progress in debt restructuring has been faster than expected and the task now is to cement what has been achieved” Madam Georgieva added.

Ghana’s IMF facility

Ghana secured a 3 billion United States dollars IMF extended credit facility (ECF) in 2023 after President Akufo-Addo on 1 July 2022, authorized the Minister of Finance then, Ken Ofori-Atta, to commence formal negotiations with the IMF to secure a balance of payment support as part of broader efforts to quicken Ghana’s build back in the face of challenges induced by the COVID-19 pandemic and the geopolitical armed conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

Ghana’s three-year-IMF programme is in its first year of implementation, with the nation so far, receiving a total of 1.2 billion United States dollars from the IMF in two payment tranches of 600 million dollars each. Ghana has also completed negotiations with her external creditors and there are ongoing discussions with her external private creditors.

AI Summit

As part of her first visit to Ghana, Madam Kristalina Georgieva, together with the Minister for Finance, Dr Mohammed Amin Adam, will be participating in an Artificial Intelligence (AI) summit, which would be held at the Kempinski Hotel in Accra, under the theme “AI as a Catalyst to Transform Economies in Sub-Saharan Africa”.

Panel discussion

There will also be a panel discussion that will take a look at the challenges and opportunities that Artificial Intelligence (AI) presents for emerging economies, particularly focusing on Ghana’s digitalization and AI readiness.

The discussion will also aim at exploring strategies for harnessing AI for positive outcomes, examining its role in the 4th industrial revolution alongside technologies like cloud computing and the internet.

The panel will include the visiting IMF boss, Kristalina Georgieva, Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, the Minister for Communications & Digitalisation, Dr Patrick Awuah, President of the Ashesi University, and Dr Jason Hickey, Head of Google’s AI Research Centre.

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