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Business News of Wednesday, 6 February 2019


Tell the true story of Ghana’s economic performance – Adongo to BoG Governor

Isaac Adongo, MP, Bolgatanga Central Isaac Adongo, MP, Bolgatanga Central

Member of Parliament for Bolgatanga Central, Isaac Adongo, has advised the governor of the Central Bank, Dr Ernest Addison to tell a true story about the economic performance of the country and stop cooking Ghana’s economic data.

He said, the Bank of Ghana (BoG) unethically and unprofessionally decided to falsify Ghana’s Net International Reserves (NIR) and mislead investors and the markets by adding Ghana’s petroleum holding funds to the net reserves.

This act according to Mr Adongo is against the IMF’s Balance of Payments Manual 5 (BPM5) guidelines on NIR definition.

“The Petroleum Holding Funds are encumbered funds which are not available to BoG and cannot be added to its reserves. Therefore, by adding it to the NIR, it was equivalent to stealing someone’s money to add to yours to avoid being identified for your true level of poverty,” Mr Adongo stated in a letter copied to the BoG Governor.

Mr Adongo who doubles as Finance Committee in Parliament observed that the BPM5 is designed by the IMF to provide international standards and guidelines for compiling balance of payment (BOP) statistics.

“It is actually your Bible and that of all Central Banks in compiling balance of BOP statistics yet I observed that you decided to violate it with impunity, even under a Fund program,” Mr Adongo stated.

He noted that as a result of this manipulation and concealment of the true data on Ghana’s NIR position, the markets were deceived into taking decisions based on such falsified economic data.

“Interestingly, you adjusted the NIR in your latest Summary of Economic and Financial data, which gives completely different figures for the various months of the year from what was reported in November 2018,” he said.

“Mr Governor, this is chaotic, unethical and insincere. It is observed that this time, you added another USD600 million to our NIR position as at December 2018 to increase the figure from USD3.2 billion to USD3.8 billion, apparently to hide the true state of our reserves and the unprecedented drawdown in NIR,” Mr Adongo’s letter reads further.

Mr Isaac Adongo bemoaned that based on the projections of a possible global economic downturn, Ghana, as a commodity exporting nation, has to be extremely worried about the low levels of NIR, especially in the face of a cumulative trade surplus of USD3 billion.

He, however, hinted that the Ghana cedi has been exposed to severe headwinds because the BoG has failed to build on the country’s NIR.

This, he indicated that must be informing monetary policy actions and not fictitious economic data to lure investors.