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AfDB pleased with management of economy; pledges full support

By Ken
Sackey, GNA

Accra, Aug. 02, GNA – Ghana can access $500
million annually  from the African
Development Bank for development programmes , over a three year period,
following  President Nana Addo Dankwa
Akufo-Addo’s prudent management of the economy.

The President of the African Development Bank
(AfDB), Mr. Akinwumi Adesina, Wednesday, declared: “We will we work with you to
move Ghana towards the commercial window of the Bank.”

“I just want to assure you that we will
provide the maximum amount support for you and your Government to succeed. You
have put together an excellent team, a first rate team, and I have every
confidence that it will succeed.”

During a courtesy call on the President at the
Flagstaff House, Mr Adesina noted the successes being chalked in transforming
the economy saying, “I must commend you for the growth that I am beginning to
see. The economy is going to grow this year at 6.3%, and next year at 7.4%.

“The medium-term outlook is great, at about
9.2%. You (President Akufo-Addo) have always said you wanted Ghana back, and a
Ghana Beyond Aid. This kind of growth trajectory is exactly what is needed for
a Ghana Beyond Aid.

Mr Adesina, who is on a three day working
visit to Ghana, also lauded the clarity of President Akufo-Addo’s vision and
the path he was taking Ghana’s economy, which, he said, “has enhanced the
image of the country and its standing with the global, international financial
community.”

He also commended the Government for the
efforts at stabilising the macro economy.

“The results are quite evident,” he noted. “If
you look at the inflationary rate, it has gone down to 12.1%. The debt stock in
relation to the size of the GDP has also gone down to 67%, from what you
inherited.

“These are all great signs of your stewardship
in the few months that you have taken over. That is a very good tone.”

The AfDB President also expressed his delight
at the stability the Akufo-Addo-led Government had achieved in the Energy sector,
emphasising that: “We will continue to be supportive, especially on renewable
energy in Takoradi TII.”

He also gave the assurance that the Bank would
support Ghana “in trying to deal with the issue through partial credit
guarantees and partial risk guarantees to reduce the debt levels, because the
power sector has to work very well.”

On cocoa, Mr. Adesina described the leadership
of President Akufo-Addo and that of President Ouattara of Cote d’Ivoire “as
crucial.”

“As both of you mentioned to me, it does not
make sense for Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire to produce 64% of the world’s cocoa,
and, yet, be at the short end of the stick of not being able to control the
market,” he stated.

“So you have given us specific instructions of
what you wanted and we’ve moved on that.”

To this end, the AfDB President noted that,
“We (AfDB) have received a request for $1.2 billion from Ghana’s Minister of
Agriculture and from the Cocoa and Coffee Board of Cote d’Ivoire, and we will
be looking at building warehouses so you can store the cocoa and not have to
sell immediately after harvest.

Additionally, Mr. Adesina stated that a
Stabilization Fund had been set up to “make sure we are able to deal with
downside risk in terms of the volatility of prices.

“The third is to recapitalise the cocoa
plantations because they are quite old, and it requires an injection of money
by the state to do that.”

Mr. Akinwumi Adesina assured Ghana that the
Bank was very strong solid as ever.

Last year saw $10.5 billion dollars of
approvals, which is highest in the history of the Bank, he said.

“We also did $6.5 billion of disbursements,
again the highest in the history of the Bank. So the bank is very strong to
support you realise your vision.”

GNA

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