Ghanaian officials have expressed hope that the $3bn bailout package recently approved by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will help to alleviate the country’s economic crisis and the suffering of its people. The funds will be paid out in instalments over a three-year period; it is widely accepted that major reforms and better governance are needed in Ghana if the bailout is to support the country’s long-term development. The Finance Minister of Ghana, Ken Ofori-Atta, has described the IMF credit facility as “a key step on the path to robust reform and inclusive growth”. However, opposition lawmakers have criticized the government’s handling of the economy, and have warned that the IMF loan will negatively impact Ghanaians.
Skyrocketing inflation, a weak currency and high public debt have severely impacted Ghana’s economy. The IMF has expressed its intention to monitor the implementation of an economic programme focused on restoring macroeconomic stability and ensuring sustainable growth. The IMF programme, including debt restructuring and reforms, is expected to create a brighter future for the country, with those in charge asserting that the assistance offered is merely the “first step” toward fixing long-lasting issues. The governor of the Bank of Ghana, Ernest Addison, has called on various sectors to support the government’s economic agenda, stating that “now is the time to get to work”. The first payment, a $600m tranche, is expected imminently.