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The Budget Statement and Economic Policy of the Government of Ghana for the 2014 Financial Year presented to Parliament on Tuesday, 19th November 2013 by Hon. Seth E. Terkper

  1. Mr. Speaker, I beg to move that this august House approves the Financial Policy of the Government for the year ending 31st December, 2014.
  1. Mr. Speaker, on behalf of His Excellency, John Dramani Mahama, President of the Republic of Ghana and in accordance with Article 179 of the 1992 Constitution, permit me to present the Budget Statement and Economic Policy for the year 2014 to the House.
  1. Mr. Speaker, in March this year, I presented the 2013 Budget Statement and Economic Policy of the Government to this august House. The election petition case was still ongoing at the time and therefore we must be grateful for the lifting of the cloud of economic uncertainty that came with the decision which reaffirmed H. E. President John Dramani Mahama as the validly elected President of the Republic of Ghana. His Excellency, the President has since led many to compliment Ghanaians for making our democracy strong.
  1. The 2013 Budget was based on the Ghana Shared Growth and Development Agenda (GSGDA: 2010-13) which lapses this year. The successor plan, for the next term (GSGDA II: 2014-17) is being finalized and will incorporate a medium-term vision and strategy for the country.
  1. In the 2013 Budget, one of the primary objectives of Government was to deal with the high budget deficit caused by overruns that were highlighted in specific detail and explained to the House and the nation.
    While proposing solutions to tackle the causes of the overruns, we indicated clearly that the fundamentals of the economy were strong and the nation’s medium-term prospects were also bright. Mr. Speaker, we wish to reiterate that the fundamentals of the economy are still strong and the nation’s medium term prospects are bright.
  1. Mr. Speaker, throughout the year, we have been putting a lot of focus on implementing programmes that will stabilize the budget and consolidate our Lower Middle Income Country (LMIC) status and extend its benefits to current and future generations.

    However, it is obvious that the additional focus on highlighting and correcting the short-term imbalances in the way the public purse is managed has led to some misconceptions and even deliberate distortions of our economic performance. Mr. Speaker, permit me, therefore,  to be very clear on our performance and prospects for the nation:

  • As a result of sound economic policies and priority interventions of the government, Ghana’s GDP in nominal terms has more than doubled between 2009 and 2013;
  • Our real GDP growth rate which has averaged 7 percent in recent years, in spite of all the known challenges, is much higher than the Sub-Saharan African average of 4.9 percent and the average global rate of 3.2 percent. Indeed, the provisional 7.4 percent growth rate for 2013 reported by the Ghana Statistical Service showed positive growth rates for all sub-sectors.  We should be proud of this performance as a nation;
  • For a nation which, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), is globally among three African countries (the others being South Africa and Nigeria) to have attracted the highest Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) with accumulated volume of more than US$10 billion for the past decade, our record reflects the high investor confidence in the economy;
     
  • Mr. Speaker, our positive medium-term prospects are widely acknowledged, especially as we become a significant hydrocarbon and power producer in the sub-region while maintaining a diversified economy with a solid agricultural and service base.
    Therefore, Mr. Speaker, the confidence to which we ascribe also inspires us to acknowledge our short term challenges, but move beyond them with bold strategies to secure those positive prospects;
  • Ghana won the confidence of the international financial markets with stable domestic bond performances. Furthermore, in August this year, we issued a second international sovereign bond which was over-subscribed by US$1.5 billion.

    Recourse to development financing through Capital Market Sources will now become a prominent feature at this stage of our national economic positioning;

  • Mr. Speaker, this Government has been pursuing accelerated infrastructure development supported by effective public finance management and institutional reforms, to lay the foundation for the next decade of inclusive and shared growth.
    To reiterate, our country has high potential for development, underpinned by a relatively well-diversified economy, multiple growth drivers, sizeable sub-regional market, hardworking and skilled citizens. We will continue to pursue the opportunities for prosperity and wealth  with additional bold initiatives as I shall highlight in this budget;
     
  • Therefore, Mr. Speaker, I stand before this Honourable House to present a budget that is truly transformational. In this regard, the budget highlights relevant policies for consolidating our middle income status
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