General News of Sat, 24 Dec 2016109
Don’t reduce utility tariffs – Economist tells Nana Addo
Daniel Amateye Anim, Chief Executive of the Institute of Certified Economists (ICE), has urged the next government under Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo not to immediately reduce utility tariffs.
According to him, any attempt by the new administration to reduce the utility tariffs immediately would have dire consequences for the country.
Mr. Anim, in an interview with BUSINESS GUIDE said, “The new administration needs to tread cautiously because reducing the tariffs will have dire consequences because there is no money for subsidies.
“However, communication becomes the vital tool to letting the people understand the state of the current economy and the need for everyone to be patient. Getting the support of the people is important in governing the nation,” he said.
Many Ghanaians complained bitterly about high utility tariffs and voted against the Mahama administration based on that.
They now expect the President-elect Nana Addo to reduce the utility tariffs once he assumes office.
However, Mr. Anim disagreed with most people calling for a reduction in utility tariffs, saying the new administration should at least be allowed a year to mobilise resources in order to reduce the tariffs.
“We should not force the new government to immediately reduce tariffs. They need some time to plan in order to fix the economy so we should give them some time,” he said.
Resort To FDI
Mr. Anim advised the new government to put measures in place to attract Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) into the country, stating “the new government should resort to FDI instead of borrowing.
“Borrowing immediately will not be the ideal thing for the new government to do because they criticized the outgoing NDC government for borrowing excessively,” he said.
Mr. Anim said sufficient foreign inflows would shore up the local currency against the major foreign currencies.