Govt asks IMF to extend aid deal

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    Government has asked the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to push back the end date of its $918 million aid programme from April 2018 to December 2018, IMF and government sources told Reuters on Wednesday.

    The request is expected to lead to talks aimed at a revised deal to include more money and fresh targets for fiscal consolidation, according to senior government officials.

    Any extension would further reassure investors that the new government of President Nana Akufo-Addo, which took power in January, is serious about restoring macro-economic stability, they said.

    “Ghanaian authorities released a memorandum of economic and financial policies to the IMF this week. It included a letter of intent requesting an extension of the Fund programme to December 2018,” one of the sources said.

    IMF officials say they are open to extending the programme.

    The government has outlined an ambitious programme that includes job creation through the private sector and rural development, pledging to build a factory in every district in order to restore the economy.

    Meanwhile, Ghana’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth stood at 6.6 percent in the first quarter of 2017, the statistics office said on Wednesday.

    The figure compares with full year GDP growth for 2016 of 3.5 percent. For years, Ghana’s economy grew at around 8 percent per year, but it slowed sharply in 2014 due to lower prices for its commodity exports and a fiscal crisis.

    Source : Reuters

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