The past three years have been economically challenging for most Ghanaians, but the year 2022 was even worse.
Coupled with the increasing cost of utilities, fuel, groceries and many others, a good number of citizens had to cope under unbearable living conditions. For now, many are only hanging on a thin line of faith, trusting that things will only get better.
Like many other countries, Ghana has been looking to the IMF for financial bailout, with hope that the facility would set them on a path of economic recovery in 2023. But the IMF through its Managing Director, Kristalina Georgieva, hints of tougher times for struggling nations like Ghana.
“With the economy slowing down globally, we are projecting global growth to go down to 2.7%, maybe even lower,… and it’ll continue to go down,” she said in an interview.
“This is what we see in 2023, for most of the world economy, this is going to be a tough year, tougher than the one we left behind. Why? Because the three big economies, US, EU and China are all slowing down simultaneously.”
In spite of these hints, President Nana Akufo-Addo in his Christmas and New Year message is confident Ghana’s economy will recover in 2023.
According to him, “over the last three years we have been confronted with our own captivity in Babylon moment. I am happy that in spite of it all, we’re beginning to emerge out of the difficulty, which encourages me to say that with hardwork, dedication and continued prudence in the management of the affairs of our nation, we will rise up again”.
Ghanaian economist Patrick Assuming is, however, of a different view.
“I will expect that 2023 will be a more different year than 2022 was. If you look at the domestic factors, the fact that we’re entering an IMF program, it is going to put some restraints on the ability of the government to spend in areas that they normally want to spend.
“Also importantly, we’ve already seen that under the IMF program, there’s going to be some restriction on employment into the public sector, at the same time we’re not expecting that the private sector will be in a position to create as many jobs as before.”
He further hints of a reduction in the wealth of many Ghanaians because of the debt exchange program.
“Because of the debt exchange program we’re going through, a lot of people will not be as wealthy as they would expect because their wealth will reduce and that will reduce consumption.”
But government having introduced drastic economic policies such as a cut down on expenditure and the rollout of a new VAT rate, would hope to stabilize the economy as it awaits some three billion from the IMF.
By Judith Awortwi-Tandoh [MG News]