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Ghana will maintain strict fiscal discipline ahead of elections - Mahama

Ghana will maintain strict fiscal discipline ahead of elections - Mahama

Ghana

Ghana’s president John Dramani Mahama has pledged that his government will not bow to pressure to spend during the November elections but will sustain fiscal discipline.

While addressing the parliament in an annual State of the nation address on Thursday, Mahama said that the government will not repeat mistakes made during the last election.

Mahama, who is seeking a second term, faces a tough battle against opposition leader Nana Akufo-Addo in presidential elections scheduled for November. Some economists are warning the government not to overspend in its bid to secure victory.

The being of our economic management has been the cyclical huge election year budget deficit; it's an unfavorable narrative for which Ghana unfortunately has become famous. I have assured the nation and our partners that my administration will exercise strict fiscal discipline this election year

This year, Ghana is expected to achieve a budget deficit as low as 5.3 percent of GDP under the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Extended Credit Facility (ECF) which provides a tighter fiscal space than originally anticipated, reports Xinhua.

“We must practice an even greater degree of fiscal prudence in 2016. The being of our economic management has been the cyclical huge election year budget deficit; it is an unfavorable narrative for which Ghana unfortunately has become famous. I have assured the nation and our partners that my administration will exercise strict fiscal discipline even in this election year,” Mahama said.

During the 2012 elections, hikes in civil service wages caused the deficit to mushroom, triggering a fiscal crisis that the government is still working to overcome with the aid of an IMF program.

Ghana’s fiscal crisis, coupled with a fall in global commodity prices, has sharply slowed growth. Its economy is based on exports of gold, cocoa and oil and for years (its economy) was considered one of Africa’s most promising.

Mahama has vowed to pursue prudent economic management to eradicate poverty and create jobs, adding that Ghanaians should have faith in his government.

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