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    Shifting timelines to secure IMF deal is terrible – Prof Lord Mensah

    Economist Prof Lord Mensah has described as terrible the change of timelines for Ghana to secure an International Monetary Fund (IMF) programme.

    This, he explained, is that the market relies on management information, so when management information turns out to be uncertain, it does not help.

    “It’s a terrible one,” he said in an interview on Joy FM’S Top Story on Friday.

    JoyNews/AdomNews · Shifting timelines to secure IMF deal is terrible – Lord Mensah
    He said that the Finance Minister and team do not appreciate the complexity of the situation [economic downturn or debt situation].

    According to him, the analysis of the situation in an article in Financial Times over the debt situation points out that Ghana won’t get a debt restructuring soon.

    He cited a case with Zambia.

    “Zambia is an African country. Zambia was in debt restructuring limbo for over two and half years before they even switched to default.”

    His comments come after President Akufo-Addo earlier disclosed that the IMF staff will present Ghana’s request for a loan programme to its executive board by the end of March.

    Also, the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta reiterated that government was hoping to secure an International Monetary Fund (IMF) Board approval by March 2023.

    “We are currently working to go to the IMF board in March 2023 and possibly secure the Board’s approval for Ghana’s Programme”, he disclosed on PM Express, Business Edition with host, George Wiafe.

    However, the March date elapsed and the country has not been able to get a deal.

    Meanwhile, addressing Eurobondholders at an Investors Presentation Forum on Thursday, Mr. Ofori-Atta said Ghana should expect an International Monetary Fund (IMF) Board approval for a programme by the close of May 2023.

    According to him, Ghana has made significant progress, hence the need for it to get approval as soon as possible.

    But reacting to this, Prof Mensah noted that although there may be verbal commitments from the creditors, it has not been documented for which it can be relied on to determine the timeline.

    He added that the country would not be able to secure an IMF bailout now until the first quarter ends.

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