The 2021-budget themed “Economic Revitalisation through Completion, Consolidation & Continuity” reflects the government’s plans to cushion the impact of the COVID-19 on citizens and small businesses to accelerate economic development in the country.
Although there are other initiatives to alleviate the effects of COVID-19 on the economy, such as the Obaatanpa program and the National Trust Fund, the 2021 budget provides the government’s strategy to strengthen the economy and manage the growing debt stock. This directly reflects in the increased expenditure for the year.
In the 2021 budget, the estimated expenditure is set at 113.7 billion cedis ($19.9 billion), which is a 13.7% increment compared to the previous budget of 84.5 billion cedis. The budget puts estimated revenue and grants at 72.45 billion cedis ($12.69), which increases 31% from the 2020 budget. While there is a substantial growth in the estimated revenue, the budget still has a deficit of 41.30 billion cedis ($7.25bn).
While the 2021 budget is designed to boost the economy and alleviate the hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the government must address challenges that could impede its revenue generation and weaken its debt sustainability. To sustain the budget, the Government of Ghana must develop strategic action plans to increase revenue generation, ensure transparency and accountability in governance to ensure judicious use of public funds, and implement austere measures to plug leakages and reduce its recurrent expenditures.