An Associate Professor at the Department of Finance, University of Ghana Business School, Lord Mensah says the 24-hour economic policy suggested by former president, John Mahama, should not be a standalone policy.
According to him, the government must ensure strong fiscal policies to tame unnecessary expenditure that would derail the policy.
He noted that the prevailing fiscal condition in the country is not sustainable for any serious 24 hour economic strategy.
Thus, for the former president to be successful, he first has to strengthen the country’s fiscal structure before proceeding on such an ambitious trajectory.
Speaking in an interview, he said “You cannot drum about a 24-hour economy when interest rates are high, you cannot run a 24-hour economy when you still have inflation to be high, all these things have to do with government positions.
“If the government implements, the 24-hour economy would ensure that the fiscal policy tames down unnecessary expenditures. That would call for the scrambling of funds from the market, as we speak now treasury bill rate is so high that everybody gets his money and wants to invest in treasury bill so where are those monies that would go into manufacturing?
“Where are those monies that would go into production so that you would employ more people? So effectively the economic positions would trigger the 24-hour economy. I am happy it is being announced.”
He added that the government’s fiscal and monetary policy must go hand in hand with the 24-hour economic policy to ensure sustainability.
He noted that should former president Mahama win power in the upcoming election, he would have to draw up his fiscal and monetary policy taking into consideration the limitations of the country’s ongoing IMF programme as well as other economic factors.
Thus, a solution, he said, was to ensure that the policy is intimately reflected in the budgets that will be delivered during the next administration.
“The 24 economy should not be treated as a standalone policy because if we treat it as a standalone policy, we going to fail big time because you need businesses to have access to funds to expand to employ 24 hours as expected”.