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Business News of Thursday, 20 August 2020

Source: 3 News

2020 budget deficit will exceed 15%, don’t blame coronavirus – Terkper to govt

Former Finance under the Mahama administration, Minister Seth Terkper, has projected the 2020 budget deficit will exceed 15 per cent.

The current budget deficit is hovering around 11.4% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), compared with a projection of 4.7% at the end of last year.

Economic growth is also projected at 0.9%, compared with 6.8% forecast in November and 1.5% estimated in March.

The Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, told Parliament when he presented the 2020 mid-year budget statement in July this year that the Coronavirus pandemic has impacted negatively on the economy, affecting government expenditure in all sectors of the economy.

But Mr Seth Terkper, in a tweet on Thursday August 20 said the government should not blame COVID-19 for the difficulties it is facing with the economy.

“2020 deficit will be above 15% & don’t blame COVID-19. Check 2020 Mid-Year: COVID-19 is 3% above 4.7 estimate in 2020 Budget (fully covered by IMF/WB loans & Stabex drawdown).

“The 7 to 8% (to 15%) is adding bailout/energy arrears (zero) left from 2020 Budget,” he said.

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