Use mid-year budget to revise macro-economic targets – Economist to gov’t

The government has been advised to use the 2020 mid-year budget review to revise its macro-economic targets announced in the 2020 budget.

According to economist Courage Martey, the cascading effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy will truncate the country’s economic targets, hence the need to revise those targets.

Although the government has admitted its revenue and economic targets will not be achieved this year due to the effects of the pandemic on businesses, Mr Martey told Class Business in an interview that the Finance Minister, Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, must use the mid-year review to effect the necessary corrections needed in its fiscal data.

He said: “We consider development on how the 2020 budget has been affected and you arrive at a conclusion that there is a compelling reason to revise most of it if not all of the macro target for 2020 beginning with the overall fiscal deficit”.

“Consider the fact that revenue is underperforming significantly. It’s about GHS14 billion to shortfall to target as far as revenue is concerned. That’s across all the revenue lines and on top of that is also mounting expenditure in the light of the COVID expenditure that the government is undertaking, and, so, the implication is that the budget deficit is going to widen significantly and that means that the original deficit target for the year is not feasible, it’s not achievable, it will be exceeded, and we need to revise them and get the people to know that this is the new reality…”  

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