The Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GNCCI) held the second edition of the “Chamber National Dialogue” Series themed: “MITIGATING THE NEGATIVE IMPACT OF GHANA’S IMF PROGRAMME ON BUSINESSES”. This programme took place at the GNCCI conference room, Dzowulu on 4th July, 2023.
The dialogue series was aimed at discussing the details of IMF programme; its potential risk and opportunities it present as well as the best strategies to help mitigate the negative impact of the IMF programme on local business and the private sector at large. Present at the event were Industry professionals, academics, officials, businesspeople and others who joined via zoom. They offered their expertise, experience, and views on the IMF policy.
The second edition featured distinguished experts, including Prof. Peter Quartey and Mr. Michael Boateng, who were the guest speakers at the programme shared their thoughts on the IMF, its impact on businesses and possible way out.
In his opening remarks, the President of the GNCCI, Mr. Clement Osei-Amoako said it is worth noting that a combination of external shocks and self-inflicted domestic challenges through excessive borrowing and spending have plunged the Ghanaian economy into severe economic difficulties, in the past two years and the IMF was initiated to help stabilize the economy. He added that the IMF initiative introduced ambitious conditions that has the potential to affect businesses negatively therefore it is crucial that business operators are well-informed about the IMF program and its implications for their operations. It is equally important for them to implement measures that can effectively mitigate the negative impacts. Hence, the Chamber has taken the initiative to organize this edition of the Chamber National Dialogue.
Prof. Peter Quartey, the Director of the Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research (ISSER) at the University of Ghana, spoke about the factors that has led the country to resolve to the IMF bailout. He discussed the key elements of the IMF, the negative and positive impacts on businesses since it implementation. He also spoke about the best strategies to adopt to help mitigate the negative impact and leverage on the growth and stability the programme brings.
Mr. Michael Boateng, the Associate Director Tax Advisory Services (KPMG) in his presentation gave an overview of the IMF policy. He discussed into details the IMF policy areas and it broad measures as well as the impacts deal have on businesses. He also discuss measures and strategies to mitigate the adverse effect of the IMF. He said businesses should use the strategies to fully capitalize on the opportunities.
The Chamber urged the government to take immediate measures necessary to safeguard and promote domestic businesses and the private sector. He said the government should carefully examine the sectoral contribution to the GDP and not over emphasize it since the growth of the GDP is primarily driven by unproductive sectors such as Public Administration, Defense and Social Security, Health, and Education.
The maiden edition of the Chamber National Dialogue Series was held on 21st February, 2023 under the theme “Impact of the Domestic Debt Exchange Programme on the Private Sector of Ghana.” The first edition of this programme aimed to address the effects of the Domestic Debt Exchange Programme (DDEP) on the private sector and explore necessary business strategies and policy adjustments to mitigate losses.