Dr Priscilla Twumasi Baffour, Senior Lecturer at the Department of Economics, University of Ghana (UG), has cautioned against the politicisation of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout programme.
The programme usually provides financial assistance to countries that agree to implement a series of economic policy reforms to revive and maintain a sustainable economic growth rate in the long term.
Ghana last went to the IMF in 2015 for a bailout programme, which ended in 2019.
The Minority in Parliament has raised concerns over the country’s current economic health and asked the Government to return to IMF.
Mr Cassiel Ato Forson, a Ranking Member on the Finance Committee and former Deputy Minister of Finance, had explained that the high unemployment, coupled with rising inflation, had crippled the economy, therefore, the need to go to the IMF.
The Government has also insisted that the economy had seen growth despite the devastating impact of the COVID-19, adding that the handlers of the economy were capable of recovering, stabilising and transforming the economy.
Dr Baffour during a panel discussion in Accra on Tuesday called for an end to the politicisation of going to the IMF for a bailout programme.
The discussion, which formed part of the ongoing three-day University of Ghana Annual New Year School and Conference was on the topic: “Socioeconomic impact of COVID-19 on Ghana’s economy: Challenges and prospects.”
She said, “I know there’s been a lot of politics that has gone on with the running back to your mother for safety…but as a developing country based on the trajectory and our sources of development, we don’t have that kind of resilience that developed countries have.
“So, if a policy option exists that you can always resort to, why not? But it so happens that we have politicised that aspect so much that it becomes quite difficult for policymakers to use that window.”
“At the moment, with an economy that’s on track, we do not significantly anticipate the country going to the IMF. But indeed, if push comes to shove and we have to go to the IMF for a bailout, [so be it].”
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