A former Minister of Finance, Dr Kwabena Duffuor, has stated that it is time for all to help build the national economy, which has under-performed since independence, considering its resource endowment.
He attributed the under-performance of the economy to the frequent and arbitrary changes in government, external influences, corruption, the clash of economic policies, among other causes.
According to him, the economic challenges, which began from independence in 1957, had gone beyond the normal business cycle that all economies experienced and, therefore, required the urgent attention of all stakeholders.
For that reason, in collaboration with other economic experts, Dr Duffuor has established the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), a non-political, non-governmental organisation (NGO) to help in the national effort to transform the economy.
Past economic decisions
In his remarks at the launch of the IFS in Accra yesterday, Dr Duffuor noted that the country’s fiscal management decisions and choices had more often been shaped by political expediencies, instead of sound policies, adding that that had been a contributory factor to the challenges that had faced the economy over the years.
The IFS is a politically independent non-profit making think tank devoted to the provision of economic policy advice, advocacy and training based on practical experience and insights developed through research and analysis.
He said the IFS would, among other objectives, contribute to economic policy-making and management, build capacity for economic policy research and create an environment for open discourse on public policy and macro-fiscal management.
He underlined the fact that as an NGO, the IFS was not intended to attack any political regime.
Objectives of IFS
The operations of the institute are to enhance the operations of the government, the business community and civil society by providing them with empirical and scientific data on past and present economies.
It is currently undertaking research into the local economy since independence.
As part of its operations, it will conduct research into macro-economic and fiscal policy management to promote a better understanding of the local economy and government finances.
The institute will also provide a platform for public discussions on local macro-economic policy and public finances.
In his remarks, a former diplomat, Mr K.B. Asante, lauded Dr Duffuor for the initiative.
He said the public and all stakeholders needed to understand past and present economic policies to facilitate an economic transformation.
He described the ongoing research into the national economy as important because without knowing the past, leaders were likely to make mistakes and also repeat past mistakes.
source : Graphic Online