Ghana’s Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta announces three-year COVID-19 support programme

The Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, has announced that they are developing a new initiative called the COVID-19 Alleviation and Revitalization of Enterprise Support Programme to boost the economy.

Ken Ofori-Atta

He said this is a three-year plan also known as the Ghana Care programme.

Speaking in Parliament on Thursday (May 28, 2020), Mr Ofori-Atta said it will about three years for the Ghanaian economy to fully recover from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He indicated that the programme will ensure the sustained growth of the economy.

“The Ministry of Finance is developing a three-year COVID-19 alleviation and revitalization of enterprise support programme –the Ghana Cares programme–to help revitalize the economy.”

“We are confident that this programme will help us stabilize and revitalize the economy,” he added.

The pandemic has suddenly halted three years of economic growth of at least 6%. The government projects that the growth could slow to 1.5%, the least in 37 years.

Other interventions

The government has indicated that the cumulative effect of the pandemic will cost Ghana GHC9.505 billion.

In order to cushion Ghana’s economy from the impact of coronavirus, the government has, among others launched a GHC1 billion Coronavirus Alleviation Programme Business Support Scheme.

The government and selected participating banks to micro, small and medium-scale businesses around the country are providing this alleviation to help businesses.

Out of the GHC1.2 billion earmarked for Coronavirus Alleviation Programme Business Support Scheme, GHC600 million will be disbursed as soft loans to micro, small and medium scale businesses with a two-year repayment plan.

The government is also relying on an IMF Rapid Credit Facility of US$1 billion, World Bank Development Policy Operation (DPO) of US$350 million, and the Stabilisation Fund of $219 million.

The Bank of Ghana has also advanced GHC5.5 billion to the government to meet its financial obligations as part of moves to secure GHs 10 billion from the central bank.

The additional GHC4.5 billion will be provided through the purchase of government assets.

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