The New Patriotic Party Member of Parliament for Wenchi, Professor George Gyan-Baffour says there was nothing in the budget that actually gives any confidence that things are going to be better. “The basic structure of the economy is weak. When you have a weak fundamental you cannot build on it,” he said.
Speaking on Citi Fm’s Eyewitness News about whether the proposals of the Finance Minister in the 2013 budget are able to put confidence in the Ghanaian Economy, Professor Gyan-Baffour said “from the performance of last year all the sectors of the economy saw a decline. So whatever they are saying for next year is just talk.”
“The real sector of the economy; agriculture, manufacturing and services are what is important.” According to the Wenchi MP you cannot build an economy where the manufacturing sector is always on the decline and if the manufacturing sector is always dwindling it means the entire economy is not on a good footing.
“Manufacturing is at the hub of every economy; the economic fundamentals are very weak and therefore I don’t have any hope,” he lamented.
Professor Gyan-Baffour said the resource mobilization initiators are not comprehensive enough to bring in the needed revenue for 2013. “Ghanaians are too tired now, we have already increased the price of petroleum and electricity and you are going to slap on them taxes…?”, he questioned.
In a sharp rebuttal the Chairman of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Finance, Hon James Klutse Avedzi said Professor Gyan-Baffour’s assertions are wrong.
“The performance of Ghana in 2012 of 7.1 GDP growth as compared to the global growth of 3.2% and the sub-Saharan Africa growth of 4.8% nobody can tell me that Ghana didn’t do well with 7.1% growth and therefore I will not agree with Prof that the economic fundamentals are weak.”
Meanwhile Mr. Avedzi said the resource mobilization initiative is very feasible , “If you look at what the Minister says he will bring in terms of mobilization ; revenue administration bill that will be coming to the house, the VAT bill, the income tax bill, the custom bill, etc. this will actual cover areas where people who currently do not pay will now be brought into the tax net so that we can collect more taxes. So I have the confidence that in the proposal by government.