A senior lecturer at the University of Ghana, Professor Godfred Alufar Bokpin, has downplayed the significance of any assistance from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to the country.

He stated that previous supports from the IMF has failed to achieve its intended expectations.

Although the government believes going to IMF is the last resort, he maintained that any support from the Bretton Wood institution will do very little in current times.

'Our economic salvation not in the hands of IMF' - Prof Bokpin
Professor Godfred Alufar Bokpin

The economist and Professor of Finance also insisted that the last IMF support to the country failed to achieve its year-marked target.

“Let’s not create the impression that our economic salvation is in the hands of the IMF. Not at all. We are at a situation where we think that it is the last resort and that we don’t have an option. And I will tell you why.

“The 16th IMF programme actually failed with the supervision of the IMF to deliver on some programme outcomes. The IMF is aware, and the government is also aware, that we could not achieve the sustainability the way we had envisaged, or the year marked in the original 16th IMF programme,” he told Winston Amoah, the host of JoySMS on Tuesday, June 28.

Professor Godfred Alufar Bokpin, however, said had the government applied for the support in 2021, it would have been better.

“Assuming we had signed up for an IMF programme in 2021, I believe we wouldn’t have found ourselves where we are with it now. If you look at interest rate even in the domestic market, we are borrowing in excess of 25% now.”

'Our economic salvation not in the hands of IMF' - Prof Bokpin
Professor Godfred Alufar Bokpin

A leading member of the New Patriotic Party, Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko, in a tweet on Monday, June 27, said the government may take a second look at an IMF programme because revenue from the Electronic Transaction Levy, almost two months into its implementation, is far below target and therefore cannot help the country to raise the necessary revenue to close the fiscal deficit.

He said on Twitter that the government has so far mobilised roughly ¢60 million from the E-Levy, which is far below the projected ¢600 million.

Mr. Otchere-Darko noted that “I’m for IMF in principle, adding, “Ghana is a member of the IMF. The world is in serious crisis. Ours is not helped by our high debt and low-income levels. With the economy still growing, but investor confidence low, government being compelled to cut down capital expenditures will eventually lead to job losses unless…”.

This tweet has reignited the conversation around the government going to the Fund for support.

Meanwhile, a Deputy Finance Minister, Dr John Kumah, has earlier suggested that the government might consider returning to the Bretton Wood for financial support to save the economy from complications.

According to him, an IMF programme will be pursued if needed.

“If it [bringing the economy back to life] becomes impossible, then it is the only alternative to salvage our economy. But where we are now, we think we are in the position to salvage the economy or to try the homegrown policy we are adopting,” he said in a JoyNews interview.