General News of Tue, 19 Mar 2019209
Cedi struggles: We need to focus on structural fundamentals – Nana Addo
President Nana Akufo-Addo has called for broadening of the discussions on the struggling cedi which he previously said has left him “extremely upset and anxious”.
Speaking at a meeting with the leadership of the Ghana Bar Association, President Akufo-Addo said the focus should be turned to the structural problems of the economy.
“Our public discourse should also begin to focus on much more of the structural problems involved in our currency… there are structural problems that we so far do not articulate loudly enough in my view.”
“We live in a country where we are overly dependent on the importation of things for our daily sustenance; things that we can produce, we continue to import them. At the same time, we don’t generate enough exports,” the President added.
He explained further that “it is the issue on the current account, the persistent deficit in our national income statistics on our current account that is what gives rise to the frailty of our currency.”
The Akufo-Addo administration had previously touted the macroeconomic fundamentals which have been seen to favourable.
The government leveraged the 2018 credit rating upgrade by the international rating agency, Standard & Poor’s, in this regard.
But this hasn’t stopped the cedi from depreciating against the dollar from GHc 4.9 to over GHc 5.5 since the turn of the year.
In 2018, the cedi depreciated by 8.4 per cent against the dollar.
The state’s short term intervention
The government expects the fresh injection of capital such as the $750 million Standard Bank bridge facility to deal with the challenges the cedi is currently facing.
The government is also eyeing funds from COCOBOD and the launch of the $3 billion Eurobond.
The cedi has depreciated against the dollar from GHc 4.9 to over GHc 5.5 since the turn of the year.
Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta in comments on the government’s short term move said: “we are going after; $300 million, $600 million and another $750 million and 3 billion and [I think] we should be okay. And all of this should happen within the next two or so weeks.”
But the Minority in Parliament has described these measures as unsustainable.