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IMF denies classifying Ghana as HIPC

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has denied that it has classified Ghana as a Highly Indebted Poor Country (HIPC) based on data on its website.

According to an e-mail responds based on some questions sent to the Fund in Washington DC, it said any interpretation to that effect “may be deceptive.”

Flagbearer of the Opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Mahama is reported to have alleged that the country has been categorised back under HIPC due to what he described as excessive borrowing and mismanagement on the part of the ruling NPP.

Speaking at a Professionals Dialogue series in Accra on Monday, John Mahama said the IMF forecasts Ghana’s current rate of borrowing and debt at 76.7 per cent debt to GDP ratio.

“The IMF in its Sub-Saharan African Regional Economic Outlook forecast the current rate of borrowing and debt at a frightening 76.7% debt to GDP ratio.

“Unfortunately, Ghana is back to HIPC status under Nana Akufo-Addo and Ken Ofori-Atta administration,” former President John Mahama said.

Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah debunked the former President’s claims describing it as fake news which must be taken with a pinch of salt.

The IMF in its email indicated that the list on its website are for all countries that have been on the HIPC program since 1996 are regularly updated.

It added, “this must not be interpreted as a new HIPC list, any such interpretation is flawed and may be deceptive the IMF added.”

Read the full statement from IMF below.

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.

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