By Fred Sarpong
The World Bank Ghana has allocated US$1.4 billion in support of Ghana’s Country Partnership Strategy (CSP), which is expected to be approved by the bank directors in May, this year. The CSP will ends in 2017.
Dante Mossi, World Bank Country Senior Officer announced this in a meeting with the media in Accra. The meeting was to brief the media the new Country Partnership Strategy for the Republic of Ghana and the World Bank Group.
Mossi, who led the discussion, said the objective of the new strategy is to consolidate the Middle Income status of Ghana.
This is to protect the economy from volatile global commodity prices; improve value for money of public investments, use other instruments, such as Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) in line with the PPP policy; support a financially sustainable energy sector; and strengthen public institutions to manage the macro economy and financial sector.
The international bank has said that the CPS is a response to the Ghana Shared Growth Development Agenda (GSGDA), which runs from 2010 to 2013 and recent pronouncements on development priorities.
Business Week learnt that the new CPS is structured in three pillars. These are governance and public sector capacity, competitiveness and employment, and vulnerability and resilience.
The bank has earmark several projects and researches with support of funds to implement them. They include Macro Stability for Competitiveness for 2013 financial year with US$250 million; Macro Stability for Competitiveness for 2015 with US$150 million funds; Economic Management Technical Assistance for State Own Enterprises (SOEs) for 2014 with US$10 million budgeted for; Public Sector Reform (might include SOEs) for 2014 with US$10 million funds; and Public Financial Management (PFM) improvement and consolidation for 2014 with a budget of US$40 million.
Also is improving competitiveness and financial sector, which include Ghana Manufacturing Competitiveness in 2014 with a budgeted amount of US$50 million; youth employment program in 2014 with amount of US$60 million; e-transform Ghana in 2014 with amount of US$15 million; and financial sector development policy operation in 2015, with US$50 million budgeted.
Meanwhile, the bank said that for Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) to run effectively and make profit for its activities, the government must handover the company to the private sector.
Waqar Haider, the Sector Leader, Sustainable Development for Ghana, Liberia and Sierra Leon has said it is impossible for the ECG to generate about US$250 million annually to support the 250 MW requires for the country.
‘If ECG remains in its current situation it will be difficult for the company to provide power to all Ghanaians,’ said Haider.
He argued that there is no need for ECG to connect lines to underserved areas and at the end there will not be electricity power for the people in those areas.
However, the bank has earmarked US$200 million as part of its new strategy for Ghana in 2015. But, Mossi said until the money is spent, the bank will like to see results based energy sector with projects done, before its commit any funds into any projects.