‘Lessen Imports To Strengthen Cedi’ — Alhassan Andani
President of the Ghana Association of Bankers (GAB), Alhassan Andani, has indicated that the local currency will continue its strong performance against the dollar for at least for the last quarter of the year if there are reduced imports.
The currency has performed marginally well between January and now, compared with its peers on the continent.
In an interview on Citi Business, Mr. Andani said, “We should begin to start the conversation now to take the mind of Ghanaians from dependence on export to support us and COVID has shown that we need resilience. We need to build domestic resilience. To maintain stability, it is always about demand and supply. We should as a country focus a lot more attention on selling our goods and services abroad and also reduce our penchant for export.”
“Literally, it has been said on every economic forum, but we just say it and do nothing about it. We keep importing toothpicks, handkerchiefs and straws on which you can suck your drink, all those things should stop. So, two things you have to be done simultaneously to improve export and reduce import, but we need domestic production. There are a lot of things we can produce and avoid using scarce foreign currency,” he said.
He, therefore, called on the Bank of Ghana to initiate more sustainable measures from that will help entrench the stability of the Ghana cedi in the medium to long term.
Out of some 15 key African currencies evaluated by Databank, the cedi remained relatively stable going down by only negative 2.86 per cent.
The Ghanaian cedi started the year 2020 strongly, appreciating by 4.5 per cent on a year-to-date basis.
Also, it appreciated on the back of the US$3 billion sovereign bond issue, strong macroeconomic fundamentals, and the Bank of Ghana's forward auction sales, among others.
It subsequently witnessed a 2.53 per cent depreciation against the dollar from January to July 2020. This compares favourably to the sharp depreciation of 9.32% recorded within the same period last year.