-Economist asks Bawumia
An economist, Dr. John Gatsi, has echoed fears among Ghanaians that the $15billion that Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia has claimed to secure from China could be a fool’s gold.
In order to ensure that the loan is not a booby trap to the country, he has asked that the government reveals details of the conditionalities attached to the loans to Parliament.
“It is not possible for China to easily release 2 billion dollars to Ghana without any conditions. It is also not possible for China to speedily release 15 billion dollars to Ghana. The state ought to be very transparent as to what agreement they have signed, what is the content of the agreement, the terms of the agreement, the conditions enshrined in the agreement?” He posed.
In an interview with Radio Gold’s Henry Martinson, Dr. Gatsi said it is important that the Ghanaian people know what the NPP government is saddling them with.
On Monday, thiks week, Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia returned from a four- day tour of China with news that the Chinese government has agreed to inject $15billion into Ghana’s economy.
The $15 billion is an addition to the reactivation of a 2011 loan that would lead to the disbursement of $2billion to the government.
Dr. Bawumia also speaks of $4billion that the Chinese government is looking to provide to Ghana.
Already, Dr. Bawumia himself has signaled that China would be seeking to use these loans to leverage some $460billion worth of Ghana’s natural resources.
“Our case is that if we need just 20 billion dollars to do a major massive marshal plan and we have 460 billion dollars sitting in the ground… what we really need is to develop a financing module that utilizes a small fraction of those reserves to finance infrastructure.”
Dr. Bawumia, an economist, who had constantly castigated the erstwhile Mahama regime for what he said was borrowing too much, had no problem accepting China’s covetousness for Ghana’s resources this way.
Dr. Gatsi however urges that the government explain to Ghanaians, exactly what it is saddling the country with.
He said the prospect of the loans was not his problem but that the devil may be in the detail.
“It may be good news if this money will eventually come and it may be focused, for instance, on the rail sector to revamp the railway sector to contribute to the economy of Ghana. If some industries will be set up that will be viable, that will be good news.
“But there are more important issues attached to this facility that Ghanaians ought to be concerned about.”