Maiden Africa data conference ends

The first-ever Africa conference on data aimed at enhancing macroeconomic and financial policies has ended in  Accra yesterday.

It was organised by the Statistical Department of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in partnership with the Ministry of Finance and United Kingdom (UK) Department for International Development.

The conference also sought to train the capacities of countries in Africa on how to improve data and use them for effective policy  implementation.

It brought together key players in the economic and financial sector within and across the African continent to also dialogue how accurate and timely data could foster economic analysis and improve economic decisions.

Mr. Emmanuel Seth Terpker, the Minister of Finance, expressed optimism that lessons learned at the conference would afford Ghana the opportunity to secure funding towards the realisation of the sustainable development goals.

He said enhanced data was central to the economic growth of the African continent.

Ghana, he said would continue to  seek   technical expertise  and training from IMF in many domains of macro-economic and financial statistics, including  national accounts, price statistics, government finance, monetary, external and sector statistics.

In this regard, he said  the IMF had collaborated with several development partners, most notably DFID that has supported the Enhance Data Dissemination Initiative (EDDI) over the last five years and is now entering into its second five-year phase, with even more beneficiary countries.

For example, he said, under this project, Ghana recently completed a private sector capital flow survey that will be used to help the country strengthen its balance of payments and international investment.

Government, he said, now compiles and publish quarterly national accounts statistics.

He said the ministry considers data transparency paramount because of the reaction of newly available information about the economy.

“While we have developed detailed plans for statistical improvements that are posted on the IMF’s Data Dissemination Bulletin Board, we look forward to hearing from others that have taken the first step toward enhancing such participation with greater transparency,” he said.

By Malik Sullemana    

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