The Minister for Finance and Economic Planning, Dr. Kwabena Duffuor, says confidence in the country’s economy is now strong due to the prudent policies of the government. He said the private sector’s responses to the macroeconomic policies and structural reform programmes of the government have generally been positive over the past 14 months.
Interacting with a cross-section of his ministry’s staff in Accra, Dr. Duffuor said the government recognises that the risks associated with the macro-economic imbalances have the potential to seriously undermine the effort of the country to attain a middle income status by 2010.
He said, the government is therefore, taking steps to weed out all wasteful public spending and enhance revenue through significant improvement in tax policy.
Dr. Dufuor said his vision for the medium term is to accelerate growth of the economy without compromising macro-economic stability.
He pointed out that with the emerging oil and gas industry, the transition to petroleum producing economy represents one of the most critical tests for the country’s economic development since independence.
“Barring any adverse risk factors in the outlook for the rest of the year, we anticipate better growth prospects in the second half, underscored by continued stability and gradual easing of credit conditions.”
Dr. Duffuor said, the government has implemented prudent fiscal and monetary policies that have ensured fiscal sustainability and supported the domestic financial system.
Even in the face of cyclical downturn in economic activity, he said, the government has preceded with its fiscal consolidation plans for the year.
“Though a little less than two years, the distance we have travelled these few months is remarkable. The benefits of the government’s commitment to its economic programmes are clearly visible and the decline in the overall budget deficit this year is appropriate,” he said.
Dr. Duffuor said, government budget finance has been improved greatly, and coupled with monetary policy, helped keep inflation low, providing a stable environment in which businesses and households can plan and undertake their economic activities.
He said, disciplined economic policies have contributed to the good performance, adding that the government’s objective of reducing the fiscal deficit over the medium term is feasible and critical to achieving private sector led growth.
On inflation, the Minister said the implementation of policy measures have led to significant improvement in the economy, noting that the rate of inflation now is 9.3 per cent, representing the 10th consecutive month of decline since it peaked at 20.7 per cent in June 2009.
Source: The Ghanaian Times