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Public Debt Rises To GH¢198 Billion   
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Ghana’s public debt has ballooned to GH¢198 billion or US$38.9 billion as at the end of March 2019 representing 57.5 percent of Gross Domestic Product, (GDP), from GH¢147 billion which was 49.5 percent of GDP for the same period in 2018, according to figures released by the Bank of Ghana, (BoG).

The external component of the debt increased to US$20.7 billion or GH¢105.2 billion representing 30.5 percent of GDP from US$17.3 billion or GH¢76.1 billion which was 25.35 percent of GDP for the same period last year.

The domestic debt also increased to GH¢9238 billion which was 24 percent of GDP during the same period in 2018.

The 2019 debt Strategy envisages the issuance of medium-term domestic instruments to help address cost associated with the financial sector clean-up. With zero central bank financing of the budget still in force, the strategy further envisages a cash buffer beyond the net domestic financing to cater for liquidity and liability management.

According to the government, to ensure an effective implementation of this strategy, an annual borrowing and recover plan will be published for 2019 in line with Section 60 (5) of the PFM Law.

Government intends to further develop the primary and secondary markets by reforming the primary dealership framework and facilitates securities trading on the domestic market through the GFIM.

Last week, the government issued its debt calendar of the second quarter of 2019 with plans to raise GH¢12.1 billion, from the money market through the issuance of Treasury Bills, Notes and bonds for the second quarter of 2019.

Of the amount, GH¢11.5 billion would be used to rollover maturities debts and the remaining GH¢566 million would be used for government’s financing requirements.

For the second quarter, the Bank of Ghana would issue a 91 Treasury worth GH¢4.3 billion, 182-day bill worth GH¢2.9 billion, 364-day bill worth GH¢750 million, a 2-year bond worth GH¢600 million, a 3-year bond worth GH¢800 million, a 5-year bond worth GH¢1 billion, a 6-year bond worth GH¢500 million, a 10-year bond worth GH¢800 million and a 15-year bond worthGH¢450 million.

The Calendar was developed based on the 2019 Net Domestic Financing (NDF) as stipulated in the 2019 Budget and Economic Policy of Government, domestic debt maturities and the MTDS for 2019-2022. The calendar shows the securities that are intended to be issued for the period April to June, 2019.

The Calendar also takes into consideration Government’s liability management programme, market developments (both domestic and international) and the Debt Management objective of lengthening the maturity profile of the public debt.
Source: Economy Times

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