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15.06.2005 Business & Finance

Ghana, ADB prepare strategy paper for 2005-2009

GNA

Accra, June 15, GNA - Officials from the African Development Bank (ADB) Group, nongovernmental organisations, Academia and the Ministry of Finance are meeting in Accra to fine tune the final draft of the Ghana Country Strategy Paper.

The current Ghana Country Strategy Paper (CSP) Document outlines the future relationship between Ghana and the Bank Group for the next five years.

The CSP would run from 2005 to 2009 and would aim at forging a stronger partnership with Ghana to maximize and leverage Bank resources, to significantly scale up impacts, improve the quality of life of Ghanaians and help Ghana to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

The meeting would examine the proposing of a mix of instruments and interventions and their adequacy to achieve the proposed objectives. The CSP dialogue with the Ministry and Ghanaian officials is to make the Bank's operations in Ghana more country focussed and client responsive.

This is the third successive time since 1999 that the Bank has adopted a participatory approach in the preparation of the CSP. Addressing the opening session, Professor George Gyan Baffuor, Deputy Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, said the main thrust of the Government's strategy was the implementation of prudent macroeconomic policies as well as structural reforms directed at increasing real economic growth and reducing poverty.

"The policy initiatives and fiscal measures taken so far aim at growing the economy through tighter fiscal policy and effective public expenditure control, increased revenue mobilization coupled with sustainable external and domestic debt management strategy." Prof. Baffuor said the Government was vigorously pursuing measures that would foster stable lower inflation environment and encourage private sector investment.

He said the Government valued its relationship with the Bank Group, especially its support to sectors such as agriculture, education, roads, social infrastructure and governance.

Prof. Baffuor said with the soon to be established Country Office in Accra, problems of delayed disbursements and poor communication between the Bank and Project Implementation Units, which slowed down the implementation of projects, would be a thing of the past.

Mr Jean Ndenzako, Senior Country Economist of ADB; praised Ghana's relationship with the Bank describing it as most fruitful.

He said the Bank Group's operations, which started in Ghana in 1973, had grown significantly, touching on virtually every sector of the economy. 15 June 05

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