An economist, Professor Godfred Bokpin, has predicted that the impact of the coronavirus on economies around the world may take a period of 100 years before these economies can recover.
He however, noted that some countries are likely to recuperate quickly due to the prudent measures they have instituted to deal with the ravages of the virus.
The COVID-19 pandemic has put a severe strain on government budgets, manifesting in petroleum revenue shortfalls as a result of plunging crude oil prices, shortfalls in import duties, other tax revenues, and non-tax revenues.
Speaking at the Ghana Economic Forum on Monday November 9, Prof Bokpin said “The reality is that the long term effect of COVID-19 may go beyond a century. Because the world has witnessed 15 pandemic events and all of them they leave behind long-lasting effects.
“But we are in a better position to shorten that based on the measures we put in place today.
“Looking at a recovery that is broad-based with every aspect doing what is expected of them because it is very critical in ensuring that we are able to finance the growth strategy.”
In Ghana, a number of measures have been taken to ensure that the effect of the pandemic on the economy does not prolong.
For instance, the Bank of Ghana (BoG) is supporting the government with GH¢10 billion in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr Ernest Addison said on 15th May 2020 that “Today, under the Bank of Ghana’s Asset Purchase Programme, the Bank has purchased a Government of Ghana COVID-19 relief bond with a face value of GH¢5.5 billion at the Monetary Policy Rate with a 10-year tenor and a moratorium of two (2) years (principal and interest).”
Dr Addison added, “The Bank stands ready to continue with its Asset Purchase Programme up to GH¢10 billion in line with the current estimates of the financing gap from the Covid-19 pandemic.”
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo also launched a GH¢600 million Coronavirus Alleviation Programme (CAP) business support scheme intended to support small and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs) impacted by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
The fund was intended to provide relief to SMEs across the country that has been negatively affected by the disease.