Ghana – Covid-19 has pushed our deficit and debts to worrying levels says Caretaker Finance Minister

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The Caretaker Finance Minister, Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu, says the Covid-19 pandemic has pushed the country’s deficit and debts to worrying levels.

This is according to the statistics presented in the 2021 Budget statement read in Parliament on Friday.

He said the current debt stock is ¢291.6 billion with 76.1% GDP as compared to 2016 where the debt stock was ¢122 billion and a GDP of 56.9%.

In explaining what accounted for the debt stock, the Majority Leader said the fiscal impact of covid-19 was ¢19.7 billion, cost of financial sector clean-up was ¢21 billion while ¢12 billion was the cost of Excess Capacity charges paid to IPPs.

Without the aforementioned factors, debt stock would be targeting ¢238.9 billion with 58.7 of GDP. The revision of growth rate is from an average of 7% between 2017-2019 to 0.9% in 2020.

Between 2004 and 2008, Ghana’s debt stock increased by 30% under the Kufuor led NPP Administration.

Between 2008-2012 the debt stock jumped to 269% under the Mills NDC administration and 243% between 2012 and 2016 under the Mahama NDC government.

Between 2016 to 2020, the country’s debt stock has risen to 137% under the Akufo-Addo administration.