Terkper: Economy Should’ve Performed Better Under NPP
Former Finance Minister, Seth Terkper, believes Ghana's economy should have been performing better under the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government.
The former Minister said unlike the previous administration which was battling with a long standing power crisis which affected the economy, he expected a strong economy under the NPP, given the resolution of the power crisis and the issuance of some bonds to ostensibly save the economy from collapse.
“Frankly I definitely expected a better performance of the economy. We[NDC] went through two and a half years of disruption in gas supply from Nigeria, leading to a downturn in the economy because of the power crisis. I think we oversimplified it with the word dumsor and therefore those in government were analyzing it seriously but a lot of people took it to be non performance by government even though we all know it was pipelines that were ruptured undersea and it had to take time to fix it so that was one factor of the economy going down.
“The reason I am saying we would have expected economy to perform well is that first of all the pipeline and the disruption in gas supply if we are paying well should restore power and the economy should be doing better. Second reason I will say is because we put ESLA in place and ESLA is generating about 1 billion ..So you can tell that there is some revenue flows.”
Despite these comments, he admitted there has been some positives in terms of the macro economic stability as mentioned by the World Bank.
Mr. Terkper's assessment of the economy is at variance with the finance Minister, Ken Ofori Atta's who has argued that the country's economy is “on course” despite the recent depreciation of the cedi to the dollar.
Mr. Ofori Atta had earlier stated on the same show that government had put in place various measures aimed at strengthening the country's economic base and ensure economic prosperity for citizens.
Responding to concerns that the government's supposed economic development measures appear not to be felt by citizens, the minister said; “I suspect that nobody will think that in 18 months of restructuring or starting of a business, everything will be done. The question is whether we are on course and yes, we are on course.”
On the matter of debt left behind by the NDC, Mr. Terkper made mention of the massive infrastructure carried out by the NDC to say that some of the debts had served a good purpose.
On arrears left behind, he disagreed with the figure of 7 billion cedis that had been put out, saying the real arrears in place if properly analyzed were a little over 2 billion cedis.