Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta has engaged economic stakeholders in Kumasi for their inputs in the 2019 Budget.
The engagement which is in compliance with the Public Financial Management Act 2016(Act 921) is aimed at improving good governance through better transparency and proper accountability to the citizenry.
Speaking to stakeholders which included Traditional Leaders, the Association of Ghana Industries, trade groups, Market Women Associations, Spare Parts dealers, Road Contractors, civil society groups, faith groups and Persons With Disability, Mr. Ofori Atta called on them to “contribute in keeping our economy on track by honouring your tax obligations”.
He reiterated government’s commitment to the private sector through the lowering of interest rates.
“The results of our fiscal discipline are already showing. Inflation is on a downward trend; interest rates are declining and we are getting value for money for our projects” he said.
Ofori Atta disclosed at the national stakeholders’ engagement that “our focus for next year budget will include infrastructure, industrialisation and Liquidity of the banks and expanding the Masloc scheme to benefit more Ghanaians”.
He said government was making full commitments to the Free Secondary School Program, and the School Feeding program adding that “Restoring credibility in these commitments has been one of our key success stories as a government”.
The Finance Minister said government has supported efforts at reducing unemployment by putting 100,000 young graduates to work through the Nation Builders Corps Program.
Ken Ofori Atta said Ghana does not intend renewing another ECF programme with the IMF. “We are also committed to strengthening current structural reforms, and have developed strategies to ensure discipline and the irreversibility of policies” he said.
The Finance Minister added that Ghana’s economy is strong and healthy and that its success has positioned the government to take the next steps in ensuring that the economy works for its people.
The stakeholders at an open forum appealed to government to consider fixing more deplorable roads in the next budget and reduce taxes to support the Private Sector.