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Engagement with media on IMF facility has come to stay – MoF Chief Director assures

She made the commitment when she opened a technical meeting on IMF between the ministry and media personalities in the country at the AICC

Chief Director at the Ministry of Finance (MoF), Madam Eva Esselba Mends, has stated that the Ministry has decided to make engagement with the media on Ghana’s $3 billion dollars deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) a regular activity going forward.

She made the commitment when she opened a technical meeting between the finance ministry and media personalities in the country at the Accra International Conference Center (AICC) today, Thursday, 18 May 2023.

“Today, we are commencing the first in the series of updates to Ghanaians on our US$3 billion Extended Credit Facility with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). We expect to sustain this partnership with the Ghanaian people and you as you provide timely and accurate information on this new path toward economic stability and building a resilient economy.

“We acknowledge that the media is vital to effective economic governance in our society, acting as a bridge between the government and the people. It is through your efforts that the citizens of Ghana stay informed, make informed decisions, and actively participate in the development of our nation,” Madam Eva Esselba Mends said.

“In light of this, the Ministry of Finance is committed to enhancing our engagement with the media. We believe that regular interactions and briefings such as this are essential in fostering a transparent and accountable government.

“We reiterate that going forward, we will hold engagements of this nature to keep you and the Ghanaian public updated on our progress. Your feedback and insights are invaluable to us, and we hope that through these engagements, we can create and sustain an environment of open exchange of ideas, ” she added.

Presentation

The director at the economic strategy and research division of the ministry of finance, Dr Alhassan Iddrisu, walked the media through a comprehensive presentation that essentially focused on the key components of government’s “Post COVID-19 Programme for Economic Growth (PC-PEG) backed International Monetary Fund (IMF) Extended Credit Facility (ECF).

#Verifyfirst campaign

In he address, Madam Eva Esselba Mends indicated that the finance ministry “fully aligned with the Ministry of Information’s #Verifyfirst campaign, recognizing the potential harm that false information can cause to the public and the overall development of [the] nation”.

“By providing you with accurate and verified information, we aim to ensure that Ghanaians have access to reliable sources of news and updates. I want to emphasize that these briefings have come to stay. We are committed to nurturing this relationship and creating a platform for effective communication,” Madam Mends said.

“We understand the power of transparency and believe that by working together, we can achieve our shared goals of economic growth, financial stability, and improved living standards for all Ghanaians,” she further remarked.

IMF deal

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved Ghana’s request for a US$3 billion bailout to support the country’s economic recovery on Wednesday (17 May).

The US$3 billion from the Fund is to be used to shore up the country’s economy which took a bad hit following the COVID-19 pandemic and the geo-political war as a result of the Russia invasion of Ukraine.
Last Friday, the IMF managing director, Kristalina Georgieva, said Ghana’s official creditors had provided the necessary financing assurances for the IMF executive board to look at signing off the loan.

Earlier, the Minister of State at the Finance Ministry, Mohammed Amin Adam, had hinted that the IMF was likely to approve Ghana’s bailout by Wednesday (17 May).
“We expect a deal on Wednesday. With the disbursement, there is going to be US$600 million as a first tranche just immediately after the approval,” Adam said, speaking by phone, adding that Ghana hoped to receive the funds within a week of the board’s decision.

“The inflow will boost Ghana’s coffers and help it work towards the target of foreign reserves amounting to the equivalent of three months’ worth of imports by 2026, the minister said.

Reporting by Wilberforce Asare
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