Returning to IMF disastrous – Ken Ofori-Atta speaks

Ken Ofori-Atta, Finance Minister, has ruled out suggestions that Ghana should consider going into a managed programme with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). According to him, if Ghana returns to an IMF-regulated programme, it would not augur well for the country. The government of Ghana is seeking to pass the controversial Electronic Transaction Levy Bill, E-levy as Parliament has resumed for the second session of the 8th Parliament.
Ken Ofori-Atta, at the government’s town-hall meeting to discuss the E-levy on Thursday, 27 January 2022, said, the passage of the E-levy will save the country from falling back on the IMF for financial assistance, which, he said, would be disastrous. “When we were in the IMF programme, we couldn’t pay for nurses and teachers,” he said; “we couldn’t hire any more because there were restrictions on that. I mean, it’s just really thinking you can go back to Egypt.
“In a way, we have forgotten how difficult and tenacious that master from Washington was.
“So, we can deal with them for them to give us advice but we need not ever get into an IMF programme [again]. If we don’t do this E-levy, we’re just pushing ourselves in a way that would potentially end up in such a disaster,” Ofori-Atta said. About the E-levy On November 17, 2021, Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, announced the introduction of a 1.75% tax on all electronic transactions during the 2022 budget presentation before parliament. According to him, this new directive forms part of strategies to widen the country’s tax net. He added that the 1.75% tax is also to enhance financial inclusion and protect the vulnerable in the country. The E-levy since its announcement by the Finance Minister has received public backlash from some Ghanaians especially Members of Parliament from the Minority Caucus.
At a recent press conference, the Minister outlined a number of modifications to the Bill and announced that the government continued to engage stakeholders on the bill ahead of resubmission before MPs.

Source : Ghanaweb

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