Ghana Debt Crisis: Every Ghanaian Now Owes GH¢17,445 As Ghana’s Public Debt Hits GH¢575.7 Billion

Ghana Debt Crisis: Every Ghanaian Now Owes GH¢17,445 As Ghana’s Public Debt Hits GH¢575.7 Billion

  • Ghana's public debt has reached GH¢575.7 billion as of November 2022, representing 93.5% of GDP
  • The new public debt figures published by the Bank of Ghana on Monday, January 30, 2023, mean that every Ghanaian citizen owes GH¢17,445
  • The public debt figures also show that external debts have reached GH¢382.7 billion, representing 62.1% of GDP

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The latest public debt figures released by the Bank of Ghana show Ghana is owing a whopping GH¢575.7 billion as of November 2022.

This means that if the national debt was shared among each of the approximately 33 million citizens, each person owes GH¢17,445.

Also, the new debt figures mean that Ghana’s debt-to-GDP ratio has moved to 93.5% in November 2022, up from 75.9% in September 2022.

Ken Ofori-Atta has been criticised for plunging the country into a debt crisis because he's incompetent.
Collage of finance minister Ken Ofori-Atta and 5 Ghana cedi notes. Source: UGC, Getty Images.
Source: UGC

The central bank also indicated in the January 2023 Economic and Financial Data summary that finance minister Ken Ofori-Atta borrowed GH¢108.3 billion between September and November last year.

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The BoG data show further that more than half of the total national debt, specifically GH¢382.7 billion, is made up of external debts. This foreign debt component of the total debt represents 62.1% of GDP.

Ghana announces debt restructuring programme

Ghana is facing a deep debt crisis and has taken some firm steps to deal with the debilitating situation.

First, the country has run to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to request $3 billion to bail out the country.

Also, finance minister Ken Ofori-Atta, who has been heavily criticised for piling up debts recklessly, has announced a voluntary Domestic Debt Exchange Programme (DDEP). The programme invites domestic bondholders to swap their investments for new ones that take cognisance of the country's current debt situation.

Although the programme has been fraught with some controversies, the Ghana Association Bankers (GAB) and Ghana Insurers Association (GIA) have reached some agreement on the DDEP after some amendments.

Ghana’s debt crisis could mirror the Greek scenario

Meanwhile, has reported in a separate story that a finance expert has said Ghana's debt situation makes the country's economic prospects uncertain

Haruna Alhassan an analyst at the Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) said in December 2022 that Ghana's debt crisis could mirror the Greek scenario of 2010 that took close to a decade to fix.

Alhassan explained that Ghana's road to economic recovery would be long and difficult.

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