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During the Press Briefing convened on November 29, 2023 hosted at the World Bank Office in Accra, Mr. Gerald Ekow Woode, the Director of Research Policy and Advocacy at the Ghana International Trade and Finance Conference, emphasized two pivotal factors essential for Ghana’s recovery from the COVID-19 debt crisis. He underscored the significance of the success of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AFCFTA) and the active involvement of private partners in restructuring debt sustainability.
Mr. Woode highlighted the critical nature of economic recovery, particularly for the millions of informal workers adversely affected by job losses during the pandemic. He pointed out that despite facing challenges such as the global financial crisis and fluctuations in commodity prices, Ghana exhibited robust growth from 2009 to 2019, with its economy consistently surpassing a 6 percent growth rate.
In reflecting on the impact of the COVID-19 era, he noted a 1.5 percent decline in GDP growth across the continent in 2020. Ghana’s fiscal deficit, he explained, persisted due to challenges in public revenue mobilization (PRM). The fiscal deficit increased from 4.3% and 4.7% of GDP in 2018 and 2019 to 7.2% in 2020 before moderating to 5.3% in 2021. This highlighted the limited fiscal space available to African countries.
Mr. Woode concluded by advocating for a “Global Debt Initiative” as a means of debt intervention to enhance liquidity and address the challenges faced by countries in the region.
Reported by Jessica okai