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Business News of Tuesday, 31 August 2021


Focus on 'ignored' extractive sector to boost revenue collection – Duffour to government

Former Finance Minister, Dr Kwabena Duffuor Former Finance Minister, Dr Kwabena Duffuor

Former Finance Minister, Dr Kwabena Duffuor has called on the government to shift its focus onto the extractive sector to generate revenue for the country.

According to the former Governor of the Bank of Ghana, the sector has been ignored, but he believes this area will generate adequate revenue to improve the country’s economy.

Dr Duffour suggested this on the Morning Starr ahead of the IFS’s forum on Ghana’s domestic revenue mobilisation mode.

Dr Duffuor, the founder of IFS, called on the government to incentivise revenue collectors to boost their morale.

He said, “we have to look at the sector we have ignored over the years—the extractive sector. A well-managed natural resource centre has emerged as one of the safest routes to economic prosperity. It has happened to the UK; it has happened to Germany; it has happened to the US. Unfortunately, in our environment, we haven’t managed our natural resources in the most efficient way.”

He noted that previous agreements signed needed to be relooked at “we haven’t moved away from the colonial arrangement. So, we still have agreements that favour those who are in this particular sector. We haven’t had the courage, and we should have the courage to take over what is ours.”

As to whether Ghana should renegotiate all our contracts, he intimated, “I believe that we should look at it. Do we have an option? We don’t have the revenue to manage our lives, so what should we do?”

“What future are we going to pass on to our future generation if we are going to sit like this and allow a very important sector like the extractive one to be managed this way.”

Touching on what to expect in today’s presentation, he disclosed, “in today’s presentation, you’ll be shocked to know that Botswana is getting billions from its mining sector, mainly diamonds.”

“What are we getting from our gold industry? What are we getting from oil as compared to Nigeria? We need to come together as a nation to look at how to manage our extractive sector.”

He ended, “if you look at the petroleum revenue management act, the role that we wanted GNPC to play, our vision was that we were going to see a GNPC that will be on its own today, a state huge oil company.”

“IFS will not talk about the technicalities in what GNPC is doing, but whoever wants to take a bigger share of the oil sector for our country, we’ll support the person, but we’ll not go into how it should be done properly.”

“Look at the oil-rich countries; they have control of their oil resources. Even in Nigeria here, they get more than 51% of their oil revenue. How much do we get, 16.2% or so.”