The Ranking Member on Parliament’s Finance Committee, Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson, says government needs to commence a national discussion on how to make the country’s debt level sustainable.

According to him, it is rather clear that the country’s debt level is currently unsustainable and should the IMF confirm same that will mean the country will not receive any funding till some debt restructuring is carried out by the government.

Thus, by initiating a dialogue on debt restructuring and engaging experts from academia, civil society and across the political divide, the government can begin to address some difficult situations that may arise from the IMF bailout.

Speaking on JoyNews’ PM Express, he said, “Ghana as we speak is going through sovereign insolvency stress, we’re simply insolvent. So what we need to do is to take a decision to restructure. But the question is what kind of restructuring?

“That is the kind of conversation I believe we have to go in. We have to consider the kind of restructure that we’ll do that will safeguard the economy and preserve us going forward. I believe that is where we’ve gotten to at this stage.”

He noted that a conversation on debt restructuring now before the IMF negotiation advances any further could mean that Ghana would have a solution to making her debt sustainable and thus increasing the country’s chances at securing a programme.

“The first thing is after identifying that the debt is unsustainable how do you make it sustainable before you get the IMF programme? You need to agree on the debt relief that you will require. If you’ll need 20%, 30%, 40% of your GDP in the form of debt relief, that brings the question, who will bear that burden?

“How are you going to burden share? Are you going to tackle external, domestic or everybody else? Are you going to add official bilateral or not? At that point you need to make a decision and would debt restructuring alone do the trick? Because remember debt restructuring deals only with commercial debt holders.

“So if you’re going to deal with the official bilateral and export credit agency you need more than debt restructuring. You will need what we call debt suspension initiative under the common framework. So that will mean you’ll need a double do,” he said.

He has thus charged the government to begin the national dialogue as soon as possible before the situation worsens.

“So the situation is not as simple as we think it is, and I’m urging the government to start talking to the right people. People in academia, we have excellent people out there and this country we’re blessed with people with knowledge.

“The academia is big, you can tap into their knowledge, civil society and even the political divide, across the political divide and pick knowledge. Let’s sit down and confront the situation at the national level. Unfortunately, they’re dealing with it at the partisan and political party level, that isn’t helpful.

“The situation goes beyond politics. We need to rescue our country because this is all we have and the situation is getting bad by the day,” he added.

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DISCLAIMER: The Views, Comments, Opinions, Contributions and Statements made by Readers and Contributors on this platform do not necessarily represent the views or policy of Multimedia Group Limited.