Bokpin downplays significance of IMF bailout

A senior lecturer at the University of Ghana, Professor Godfred Bokpin, has downplayed the significance of any assistance and support from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to the country.

He indicated that previous supports and assistance from the Fund had failed to achieve its intended expectations although the government believed going to the IMF was the last resort.

Prof. Bokpin insisted that any support and assistance from the Bretton Wood Institution would do little in current times since the last IMF support and assistance to the country failed to achieve its year-marked target.

However, Gabby Otchere-Darko, a leading member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), stated that the government may take a another look at an IMF programme because revenue from the Electronic Transaction Levy (e-levy) almost two months into its implementation was far below target and could not help the country to raise necessary revenue to close fiscal deficit.

He said the government had so far mobilised GH¢60 million from the e-levy, which was far below the projected GH¢600 million and intimated that he was for the IMF in principle because Ghana was a member of the Fund but the world was in serious crisis which had not helped by high debt and low-income levels.

Mr Otchere-Darko noted that with the economy still growing, but investor confidence low, the government being compelled to cut down capital expenditures would eventually lead to job losses unless…

However, Prof. Bokpin maintained that the citizenry should not create the impression that the economic salvation was in the hands of the IMF because the nation was at a situation where it was the last resort and did not have an option saying “the 16th IMF programme actually failed with supervision of the Fund to deliver on some programme outcomes.

“The IMF is aware, the government is also aware, we could not achieve the sustainability the way we had envisaged, or the year marked in the original 16th IMF programme and had the government applied for the support and assistance in 2021, it would have been better.

“Assuming we had signed up for an IMF programme in 2021, I believe we would not have found ourselves where we are with it now and if you look at interest rate even in the domestic market, we are borrowing in excess of 25 per cent now,” Prof. Bokpin pointed out.

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