The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has denied reportage by local media outlets that it has added Ghana to the list of Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC).
The Fund, following the reportage that was widely circulated yesterday, Tuesday, October 27, has come out to make the necessary clarifications.
In an email response to norvanreports on the issue, the IMF first of all noted that, any interpretation of Ghana being identified as HIPC on the basis of the country being part of the list of HIPC countries on its website is flawed and may be deceptive, as these countries have been on the HIPC Initiative programme since 1996 and data about the countries are regularly updated on its website.
“The list of countries that have qualified to the HIPC Initiative since inception in 1996 is regularly updated on our website and MUST NOT be interpreted as a new ‘HIPC list’,” the Fund told norvanreports.
It also noted that, Ghana in July 2004, successfully reached its completion point and that the HIPC Initiative programme is essentially CLOSED for countries that have already reached the Completion Point.
Addressing the recent projection of Ghana’s debt-to-GDP by the Fund – the 76.7 per cent debt-to-GDP projection which seems to be the source of the controversy – it posited that the debt update has NOT triggered any decision or action by the Fund to add Ghana to the HIPC list.
The brouhaha about Ghana being listed as HIPC by the IMF, comes on the back of Ghana being projected by the Fund to have a debt-to-GDP ratio of 76.7 per cent end-2020, thereby surpassing the maximum 70 per cent debt mark.
Read details of the email from the IMF:
We have been made aware of (social) media reports stating that Ghana has recently been added to the list of Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). As a result, we would like to provide the following clarifications:
- The HIPC Initiative is essentially CLOSED for countries that have already reached the Completion Point.
- As you may recall, Ghana successfully reached the Completion Point in July 2004.
- The list of countries that have qualified to the HIPC Initiative since inception in 1996 is regularly updated on our website and MUST NOT be interpreted as a new “HIPC list.”
- Any such interpretation is flawed and may be deceptive.
- Also, the recent update of Ghana’s debt-to-GDP ratio has NOT triggered any decision or action by the IMF. For ease of reference, you can access the latest issue of the Fund’s Regional Economic Outlook for sub-Saharan Africa on our website.
We would like to take this opportunity to encourage you to seek clarification before giving credence to rumor involving the IMF in Ghana. We reserve the right to issue a public statement to make such clarifications as needed.