IMF urges gov’t to pass new taxes

Ghana must legislate new measures to boost revenues by at least 0.5 percent of gross domestic product before the IMF reviews a US$918 million credit deal next month, a Reuters report has said.

The report also stated that government must outline plans to clean up the financial sector and show stronger commitment to cut debt, including limiting its next Eurobond for budget support to US$500 million.

Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta said last week the government planned to issue up to US$2 billion of sovereign issuance by June to pay down debt that hit 68.7 percent of GDP last November and help finance the 2018 budget.

Ghana is seeking a combined fifth and sixth review of the IMF programme in early April.

The fifth review, originally scheduled for December, had delayed pending implementation of benchmark structural reforms.

According to Reuters an IMF document sighted said “Parliament to adopt revenue measures equivalent to 0.5 percent of GDP (one billion cedis) by March 31 and do more later,”

The document, dated Feb. 26, formed the basis for talks between an IMF staff mission and the government this week.

The mission left Accra on Thursday after discussing the actions required for the next review, as well as other reforms needed to exit the programme early next year. It is unclear if the talks were conclusive.

Source: Citi Business News

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