27.11.2022 Headlines

2023 Budget: Expenditure cuts announced by Finance Minister disappointing, insignificant – Economist

By Eric Nana Yaw Kwafo
Prof. Godfred BokpinProf. Godfred Bokpin
27.11.2022 LISTEN

An economist and professor of Finance at the University of Ghana Business School, Prof. Godfred Bokpin has shared that interventions announced by Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta in the 2023 Budget Statement and Economic Policy show that government is not ready to lead by example in terms of burden sharing in the current economic crisis.

According to him, the expenditure cuts in the 2023 Budget are not only disappointing but very insignificant.

“The expenditure cuts announced by the Finance Minister were disappointing. They are insignificant.

“The conclusion from those cuts is that the government is not leading by example in terms of burden sharing,” Prof. Godfred Bokpin said during an engagement on Joy News on Saturday, November 26.

Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta was in parliament on Thursday, November 24, to present the 2023 Budget Statement.

Among other things, he said a ban has been placed on the use of V8/V6 vehicles and their kind by government officials unless they are embarking on a cross-country journey.

In addition, fuel coupon allocations have been reviewed with a directive that there should be no sharing of hampers and the printing of diaries and calendars at the end of the year heading into 2023.

Reacting to these and many other expenditure-cut measures in the Budget, Prof. Godfred Bokpin says the government should have done more.

In his view, the current economic crisis requires that government puts in place a system for a lean government that the country can rely on in the next 10 years.

“We need a revolution in the cost structure and cost governance drivers in terms of Ministries and Ministers and State Owned Agencies,” the Economist added.

Speaking on the same platform, Deputy Minister of Finance Dr. John Kumah stressed that government is committed to changing how things are done in the country.

He said government through the 2023 Budget will save billions to help in turning around the economic woes of the country.

“If you compare the 2022 budget and the 2023 budget, you will notice that we didn't include funds for new projects in the 2023 budget which will save us $2b.

“We were not able to reflect on other things because of arrangements that have to be made before announcing them. In all, government has shown commitment to change things,” Dr. John Kumah who is also Ejisu MP assured.

Eric Nana Yaw Kwafo
Eric Nana Yaw Kwafo