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Import duties, exchange rate, economy high on expectations ahead of EMT’s Town Hall Meeting

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Ghanaians have high hopes as the Vice President and Ghana’s Economic Management Team readies-up to have the maiden Town Hall Meeting with Ghanaians on Wednesday, 3rd April 2019 at the Physicians & Surgeons Hall at 10am. The Economic Management Team (EMT) is a body set by various governments, at least from the time of President Kuffour and usually chaired by the siting Vice President to steer the affairs of the economy.

Under this regime, President Akufo-Addo set up the nine (9) member EMT in February 2017 chaired by Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia with Senior Minister Yaw Osafo Marfo as the Vice Chair. Other members are Mr. Ken Ofori-Atta (Finance Minister), Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto (Agric Minister), Hon. John Peter Amewu (Energy Minister), Prof. George Gyan Baffour (Minister for Planning), Hon. John Alan Kwadwo Kyerematen (Minister for Trade and Industry), Dr. Anthony Akoto-Osei (Minister for Monitoring and Evaluation), and Prof. Joe Amoako-Tuffour (the Secretary).

According to members of the Economic Management Team, they meet every week (Tuesdays) and invite various government agencies, the private sector and different stakeholders to have fruitful discourses that shape government economic policies. ‘So far, there is no doubt that the EMT’s efforts have helped to shape well policies of the government and delivered on key economic milestones of President Akufo-Addo’s government’ – said the Secretary to the EMT.

According to some members of the EMT, the Town Hall Meeting is part of the broader scope of President Akufo-Addo’s government to enhance inclusive governance and bottom-up decision making. According to the Spokesperson to the Vice President, who doubles as a member of the EMT Secretariat, the Town Hall Meeting will be largely questions and answers based to enable the Ghanaian people the chance to be heard and be part of government decision processes.

Ahead of the encounter, many Ghanaians have expressed their views, largely welcoming the move by government and describing it as a novelty that is good for the progress of the country. Information gathered by our outfit indicates that Ghanaians will be asking questions bothering on import duties, the exchange rate, matters on energy, the broader economy, and government’s flagship projects.

Again, hopes are high that the Vice President, who has been known to be a champion of Ghana’s digital revolution will shed more light on how and why he and government intend to make Ghana the digital hub of the West African sub-region. Ghanaians believe that if government is able to address the problems of high import duties and the blips on the currency market it will crown the efforts it has put in place to restore the economic mess they inherited in 2016.

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