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DDE deadline unlikely to be extended further – Ken Ofori-Atta

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Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta has hinted that the deadline for the domestic debt exchange programme will not be extended further than the latest January 31 date.

According to him, he is confident the government will garner the required 80% subscription it is seeking to implement the policy right in time for the International Monetary Fund executive approval.

He noted that the government was currently working on a very tight schedule to facilitate the injection of much needed foreign exchange into the economy through the IMF deal.

Any further delays, he suggested, would be detrimental to the economy and the Ghanaian fiscal space in general.

“No I don’t think so. I’m confident that we’ll get there. You know we have done the staff level agreement as you know, we met with the Paris Club membership and we have given them till end of February for us to go through what we call the common framework or some version of it but that will be facilitated, and then we expect them to go to board in Washington in March.

“So really, we don’t have that type of time, because as you know George, usually the first quarter is when we would have gone to the international capital market for our usual Eurobond issuance.

“Now that market is not there for us this year, maybe even next year, an agreement in the fund programme is what one is using to be able to give the necessary comfort that is required,” he said on JoyNews’ PM Express Business Edition.

Meanwhile, the government has started engagements with individual bondholders and collective investment schemes to address their concerns on the domestic debt exchange programme, following their strong opposition to their inclusion in the exercise.

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