Help gov’t steer country out of the economic hardship – Danquah Institute

The Executive Director of the Danquah Institute, Dr Antoinette Tsiboe-Darko has urged Ghanaians to support the government in its efforts to rebound the economy from the current economic crisis.

According to her, much as government is largely responsible for formulating policies to steer the country out of its current condition, it is also incumbent on us as citizens to complement these efforts by contributing our quotas towards building back the economy.

“Today, due to our interconnectedness to the global marketplace, and as the impact of external forces on our everyday lives will continue, we are faced with unforeseen challenges of the future and these are not challenges we have asked for as a people. We actually do not relish the situation we find ourselves in, but we are here and together as one, we must strive to build our nation,” she said.

Dr Tsiboe-Darko made the remarks at an economic forum organized by the Danquah Institute (DI) in Accra on Friday, December 9, 2022.

The Forum, under the theme: “Restoring Macroeconomic Stability and Sustainable Economic Growth; Our Collective Responsibility” brought together hosts of resource persons, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), students, and members of the public to deliberate on how to support government navigate these hard times.

In her remarks, Dr. Tsiboe-Darko recounted how the government had managed to keep the country afloat even in the face of the dreaded coronavirus pandemic. She said the government had managed the resource envelope of the country so well prior to the influx of the virus recording year-on-year single-digit inflation continuously for 4 years, stabilized the cedi against its major trading partners and kept the country on a high growth trajectory.

She said though Ghana is not the only country feeling the brunt of the twin crises of COVID-19 and the Russia-Ukraine war, her situation is peculiar given that this is not the first time she finds herself in such a precarious economic condition hence, something must be done to prevent the reoccurrence of such situation in future.

Present at the deliberations were the Chairperson of the Forum, Professor. Eric Assibey, Dr. Owusu Adu Sarkodie, an Economist at the University of Ghana, Dr. Kwadwo Opoku, also an Economist at the University of Ghana, Development Economist, Dr. Agyapomaa Gyeke-Darko, Dr. George Domfe, and Dr. Ama Boafo-Arthur, a lecturer at the Department of Distance Education, University of Ghana.

Proffering solutions to the current economic hardship, Dr. Adu-Sarkodie encouraged the government to improve its revenue mobilization effort. He said one way to do this is to use digital platforms to effectively monitor our tax collection and clamp down on persons who evade taxes. He said the government must also trim the list of companies that are exempt from paying taxes as these exemptions come at a cost to the state.

On his part, Dr. Opoku encouraged the government to improve its exchange rate management. He said in doing this, the government must establish an Exchange Rate Stabilization Fund on purchases of forex to help stabilize the cedi in periods of volatility. He added that this will help the government properly manage the country’s exchange rate regime.

Dr. Ayapomaa reiterated the need for us to be intentional about our development as a country. She said the government must move to make State Owned Enterprises (SOES) stand-alone enterprises that can carter for themselves stressing that this is one of the sustainable ways government can free itself from the liabilities of these companies that do not contribute significantly to its revenue.