Deputy Minority Leader James Klutse Avedzi has advised Finance Minister-designate Ken Ofori-Atta to pay greater attention to domestic revenue generation as an immediate step to tackle economic challenges in the country.
President Nana Akufo-Addo on Tuesday January 10 named 13 ministerial nominees including Mr Ofori-Atta as Minister of Finance-designate.
Speaking on the Executive Breakfast Show (EBS) on the immediate steps to be taken by the Finance Minister to arrest the economy on Wednesday January 11, Mr Avedzi urged: “He [Ken Ofori-Atta] and the NPP administration should focus more on domestic revenue generation if really they want to reduce the budget deficit.
“If they want to reduce the debt-to-GDP ratio, more emphasis should be laid on domestic revenue generation. If that is achieved and expenditure is controlled, then the ratios will turn into figures that will [be favourable]. That means that debt-to- GDP ratio will drop, budget deficit will drop, but if domestic revenue is not collected more than it is being done now, then the situation will even worsen,” the Ketu North legislator told host Jonas Ofori Yeboah.
Touching on the choice of Mr Ofori-Atta as Finance Minister designate, Mr Avedzi said although he had been successful at financial management, given his record at Databank, a private financial institution, managing finance in government or public institution was different, hence he should quickly learn how to handle public finance.
“He has knowledge in financing or managing finance [in] private institutions and for that matter when it comes to government or public he should be able to learn fast and see how he can manage them. I do not think that he will not be able to do it; I think he can do it, but that again he must be fast enough to learn the new systems. If it is something that borders on private business, I wouldn’t even make any comment at all, but this is something that borders on public finances, so he must learn the difference between the two so that he will be able to do that.”
He advised: “Whenever he is bringing any agreement to parliament, he should ensure that the proper procedure is followed, due diligence is conducted before he brings it to parliament, and then he will be able to have the support of all members of the House in order to carry on his duty as the Finance Minister.”