President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says the government has reached an agreement with the commercial banks and the Bank of Ghana to raise GH¢3 billion to support specific industries in the country.
The amount, he said, will be disbursed to industries that have been severely affected by the coronavirus (COVID 19) pandemic in a form of loans.
The President said this yesterday at a meeting with key players in the hospitality industry in the country at the Jubilee House in Accra.
“The Bank of Ghana, with the support of the Ministry of Finance, has worked towards reducing interest rates and even putting in place a moratorium on the payment of monies.”
“There is a subsequent package that is also being currently negotiated between the ministry and the BoG for a large amount to be pumped into the economy to support productive sectors of the economy.”
The packages, he said, will be given in addition to the GH¢600 million package earmarked for SMEs to cushion them against the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
He commended players in the hospitality industry like Alisa Hotel for putting their facilities to the disposal of the government during the quarantine period.
The President indicated that although his government is the hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic, it will continue to work hard to restore the economy.
“We’ve had huge part of government’s revenue that has gone out of the window as a result of the pandemic. The 2020 budget which was made in November was predicated on 65 dollar barrel of oil. Today we all know that oil is now around 18, 19, 20, 21 dollars oil a barrel.”
“The commitment of the government to stand beside you and work with you to find a way forward is unconditional,” he assured the industry players.
President Akufo-Addo commended stakeholders in the hospitality sector for their contribution to the growth of the country’s economy, adding that the success of last year’s Year of Return, is largely attributed to the hospitality sector and thanked the businesses in the sector for the support.
“People left this country with very good memory of Ghana and the credit must be given to the hospitality industry,” he said.
The President of the Ghana Tourism Industry (GHATOF), Ms Bella Ayayee commended the President for the support of the sector and appealed to the government to support the growth of domestic tourism, especially post COVID-19.
“Beyond COVID-19, tourism and hospitality will strive and we will record a boost,” she said.
BY YAW KYEI