Ghana’s finance minister says economy on track
Ghana’s economy is back on track with clear signs of reducing the GDP fiscal deficit from about 15 per cent in December last year to 9.4 per cent by the end of the year, the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning has indicated.
The reduction of the GDP deficit for the first quarter of the year was below target but according to Dr. Kwabena Duffuor, provisional figures as of the end of the second quarter (June) indicated that “we are on track” towards achieving the GDP deficit reduction target.
He disclosed this to the Daily Graphic after inaugurating a 10-member board of the Public Procurement Authority (PPA) at a ceremony in Accra on Thursday July 2.
The Finance Minister said efforts at fiscal consolidation were yielding positive results, adding, “We are moving closer to the target.”
Under the policy thrust of the 2009 Budget, the government seeks to adhere to strict enforcement of fiscal discipline, significant reduction in unproductive recurrent expenditure and improvement in revenue generation.
Recognizing the critical role public procurement plays in achieving such results and as one of the nerve centres of government business, Dr. Duffuor urged members of the PPA board to discharge their duties effectively.
“I personally urge you to carry out this mandate as a critical national assignment that deserves your total commitment in executing your functions without fear or favour, upholding the principles of probity and accountability for the common good of all,” he charged them.
Dr. Duffuor said the aspirations of the Growth and Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS II) and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) could be achieved through prudent public expenditure management and strict adherence to public procurement rules and regulations.
The Public Procurement Act, 2003 (Act 663) was established to regulate and rationalize the process of public procurement in the public service in a fair, transparent and non-discriminatory manner.
Members of the PPA board, which is under the chairmanship of Commodore Steve Obimpeh (retd), include Mr. Ebo Barton Oduro, Member of Parliament for Cape-Coast; Ms. Magdalene Appenteng, Mrs. Margaret Andan, Mrs. Mangowa Ghanney and Alhaji Abu Jajah.
The rest are Messrs Kwame Asante, Maxwell Awuku, Basil Ahiable and A. B. Adjei, the Chief Executive Officer of PPA.
They took the Oaths of Office and Secrecy, which were administered by the Finance Minister, to discharge a wide range of functions, such as providing guidance and exercising oversight responsibility over the operations of the PPA in the drafting of rules and regulations, as well as assessing the operations of procurement entities, planning and co-ordinating technical assistance for public procurement.
Responding on behalf of the members to their call to duty, Commodore Obimpeh gave the assurance that they would work earnestly to ensure value for money in order to achieve the President’s vision of building “a better Ghana.”
“We shall strictly be guided by the provisions of Act 663 and all the other relevant regulations regarding public procurement,” he promised.
Source: Daily Graphic