Govt implored to reduce expenditure

Professor Godfred Bokpin, a Senior Lecturer at the University of Ghana Business School, has implored the government to explore more areas to reduce expenditure to further boost domestic revenue generation drive.

He underscored the need to raise additional revenue for national development due to the projected expenditure for 2022, which had already been approved by Parliament was GH¢135.6 billion.

Prof. Bokpin conceded that the country’s revenue generation effort was below expectation and stressed on the need to raise more revenue through reduction in expenditure.

“I also do agree that expenditure is very high, we need to do something about expenditure but there is a limit to how much cut you can do, we all do agree, proportion of earmarked funds, compensation and interest payment, may not be enough, we can look at which other areas the government can cut as signal to the market about expenditure situation in the fiscal space, assurance to investors and not only investors.

“The economy does not exist to please only foreign investors, there is much to the economy than pleasing foreign investors, we have local investors also contributing to the progress and growth of our economy who we must be encouraged,” Prof. Bokpin alluded.

However, Ken Ofori-Atta,the Minister of Finance, revealed that the government had suspended 20 percent expenditure in the 2022 Budget Statement and Economic Policy which Parliament already approved and in prudent fiscal consolidation move, decided to cut down on expenditure.

The expenditure by government is expected to continue from this year and beyond, in the midst of global impact of COVID-19 on economies, ensure the government matches all expenditure to revenue inflows with all expenditure in 2022 adjusted to match revenue collection.

That is in accordance with Section 25 of Public Financial Management law, quarterly expenditure ceilings of approved budget, downward adjustment and across board for all covered entities benefiting from the budget, subject to revenue performance.

The country’s fiscal consolidation agenda will be primarily driven by expenditure with support and assistance from additional revenue, projected revenues in the budget will only be spent when they materialise and following impact of the pandemic on the economy, latest bold step adds to the government’s focus on more internal revenue generation.

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