The development policy alternative of the Convention People’s Party (CPP) will be the pursuit of economic stability, not by fiscal austerity measures, but by investments that integrate the agriculture and manufacturing sectors for accelerated growth.
According to the CPP, through this approach, the economy would be reformed to deal with the sources of trade deficits, inflation, currency depreciation and unemployment.
In an alternative policy document issued by the party’s Political Committee, it said the CPP would also facilitate the partnership of the co-operative sector in primary food and raw material, agricultural production and the corporate private sector in manufacturing.
In line with this, the party identifies the cooperative sector as a partner to widen and deepen the formal sector’s participation in the productive sector to address government revenue shortfalls.
“With support from the government of the CPP, the partnership shall produce, for example, sugar for the Coca-Cola Company and Fan Milk Ltd and ethanol for Kasapreko and GIHOC Distillery. The savings on import expenditure to reduce our trade deficit while we create jobs will be in excess of $500 million,” the policy document stated.
It said that the breweries under the development policy guidelines of the CPP shall produce beer from suitable local cereals to save the import expenditure of more than $ 500 million on hops, malt and barley.
The flour mills, according to the CPP, will be retooled, if necessary, to produce flour from local cereals.
It said a percentage of the foreign exchange expenditure of about $400 million for wheat imports would be redirected to our co-operative farmers in the production of wheat substitutes.
Bast fibre farmers, the CPP assured, would be assisted to produce the raw material and conserve the import expenditure of more than $600 million in the importation of finished jute sacks.
Their production will feed the Kumasi Jute Factory that shall be restored by an elected CPP government, the document added.
It further said the Tema Oil Refinery, under an elected CPP government, shall refine crude oil for the development of a domestic petrochemical industry towards a fulfilment of an overall development policy objective of the CPP to create opportunities to build the capacity of the co-operative and private sectors for international partnerships and participation in the global economy.
“The sceptics and pessimists will say it is easier said than done. But we ask, what is stopping us when we have valuable resources and can, in a regime of fiscal discipline, use soft monetary policy for investments with strategic and high financial returns. But even more pertinent is our covenant and commitment to the continuation of the economic reconstruction efforts of the CPP government of the first republic,” the document pointed out.
According to the document, the CPP is inspired by the selfless, courageous and incorruptible service and leadership of its founding father, Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah, to bring prosperity to the people.
“This is our testament and the difference between the CPP, the party of decolonisation, and the parties of structural adjustment,” it concluded.
Already, the CPP has pointed out that the 2015 budget of the NDC government sacrifices the people for a hopeless end.
It said the government budget levied higher taxes, and evaded responsibility to create jobs while freezing wages.
In the same breadth, it said that the government cut its expenditure on social interventions and subsidies to raise the cost of living to impose hardship on the people.
According to the CPP, the policy failure is obviously due to the fact that the policy measures do not address the causes of the deficits that lead to inflation and currency depreciation.
It further said that the lesson of the failure of past development policy is that the restriction of government economic development management responsibility to macroeconomic management has been sterile and unproductive.