According to an official of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), negotiations are still ongoing with Ghanaian authorities over possible financial and technical assistance for the country.
However, indications are that a possible Fund programme by 2015 may not be possible.
“I don’t really have any fresh guidance on Ghana, per se, in terms of developments,” remarked William Murray, Deputy Spokesperson at the Communications Department, last Thursday.
He was addressing journalists in IMF’s final press briefing of the year.
Mr Murray, however, acknowledged that concrete steps are being taken in Ghana to clean up the government payroll and also seek external financial assurances from bilateral donors and international institutions.
“Once this work is completed a financial arrangement to support Ghana’s economic program could be agreed at staff level before being proposed for the IMF Executive Board’s consideration.”
A decision by the Fund’s 24-member Executive Board, made up of all 188 member countries is crucial for a possible assistance from the Bretton Woods institution.
The IMF Executive Board normally makes decisions based on consensus but sometimes formal votes are taken. At the end of most formal discussions, the Board issues what is known as a summing up, which summarizes its views.
Mr Murray indicated that currently “we are still working with Ghana in terms of nailing down details of policies that could be supported by the Fund and its Executive Board.”
Ghana approached the Fund in August for a programme, which many regard as a bailout.
But it seems the start date of January 2015 announced by President John Mahama may elude the discussion parties.
Ghana is expected to run a three-year programme once it starts.