General News of 2014-02-21

Terkper too small for Chinese loan renegotiation - Dr Akoto Osei

The Minority’s Spokesperson on Finance, Dr Anthony Akoto Osei, has called on President John Dramani Mahama to personally step in to renegotiate the $3 billion Chinese loan secured from the China Development Bank (CDB).

According to him, the Chinese will not attend to the Finance Minister, Seth Terkper, if he is made to renegotiate a new deal.

Last month, during a visit of the China Foreign Minister, Wang Yi, to Ghana, President Mahama pleaded with him to help in facilitating the release of the rest of the loan as Ghana continues to pay commitment fees after receiving only $600million from the whole facility.

Speaking at a forum organized by the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) in Accra on Wednesday, February 19, 2014 on the theme: "The Cedi Crisis: Implications and the Way Forward", Dr Akoto Osei, who is a former Minister of State in Charge of Finance, reiterated that the $3 billion loan was a bad deal.

“‘I have even asked the president to renegotiate,” he stated.

He indicated that, so far, the country has paid $54 million on the loan as commitment fee though only $600 million has been received.

“It is just not a good deal,” he decried.

According to him, Finance Minister Terkper will be too small in the eyes of the Chinese if any renegotiation is to be carried out.

“It cannot be done at a ministerial level. Chinese are like monkeys who play by their sizes.”

The Old Tafo Constituency Member of Parliament said with his experience of having worked for the Chinese, “they won’t mind [Terkper]”.

“[The loan] was negotiated by the president and only the president can renegotiate it.”

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