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Thursday, March 7, 2013

Economist says 2013 budget presents hope for private sector

There is a window of hope for the private sector in the 2013 Budget Statement, says Deodat Adenutsi, an Economist with the Central University College.

The government’s fiscal policy statement presented by the Finance Minister, Seth Terkper focused on fiscal discipline to stabilize the economy, infrastructure development and growth acceleration.

Mr. Adenutsi says “there will be an immediate mixed reaction when it comes to the prospects for the private sector but in the long run I think there is a glimmer of hope for them to be excited about opportunities within the budget”, he said.

According to him, there should be a re-engineering of the private sector with government’s spending on infrastructure development in critical sectors of the economy to meet the Millennium Development Goals.

“There should be major spending allocated to critical areas within the energy sector as far as our power crisis is concerned and in the long run I expect that the private sector takes advantage of some of these critical infrastructure to invest into activities that would create jobs in the system”, Mr. Adenutsi.

Prior to the presentation of the budget, the Economist had anticipated government will not immediately be interested in reducing the country’s fiscal deficit, which currently stands at 9 percent.

Finance Minister, Seth Terkper said Ghana, as a developing country, must still borrow to expand its infrastructure but noted the government will shift its focus to the quality of loans it acquires.

He is hoping the deficit will stay between 6 and 9 percent within the year.

Story by Kofi Adu Domfeh

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