HIPC is behind us, there’s no turning back – Finance Minister Ofori-Atta

The Minister for Finance, Mr Ken Ofori-Atta has said that Ghana is making economic progress and “there is no turning back” to the days of Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) tag.

The Minister said the decision of the President John Kufuor administration to sign Ghana unto the HIPC initiative was due to the poor economic situation inherited from the previous National Democratic Congress (NDC) government in January 2001.

Delivering the 2021 first-quarter budget statement in Parliament on Wednesday, [October 28, 2020], Mr. Ofori-Atta said the John Mahama government failed to maintain the country’s economic gains and again took the country into an IMF programme.

“In 2001, Ghana had no choice but to swallow her pride and to sign up to the HIPC initiative. A legacy left by the outgoing NDC government. Thankfully, President John Agyekum Kufuor got us to completion in record time and came out of HIPC. By 2014, barely two years in office, President Mahama’s home-grown policy failed and Ghana signed up once again unto an IMF programme,” he said.

Mr Ofori-Atta’s comment comes on the back of claims by some members of the opposition NDC that Ghana had been re-enlisted unto the IMF and World Bank’s HIPC initiative

The IMF has already debunked the claim, explaining that no country can get unto the HIPC initiative twice.

Mr Ofori-Atta in Parliament insisted that the Ghanaian economy is stronger now than it was four years ago.

“President Akufo-Addo government took Ghana out of the IMF programme in record time. Ironically, those who mismanaged the economy for us to come and fix it are the ones wishing Ghana ill. My message to them is, there is no turning back, HIPC is behind us, economic mismanagement is behind us, the economy stronger today that it was four years ago and will continue to grow stronger and stronger with four more years to do more for the people of Ghana with God’s help,” he said.

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