Prime News Ghana

Finance Minister to seek parliamentary approval for Covid-19 alleviation programme today

By Justice Kofi Bimpeh
Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta
Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta
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Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta is expected to seek parliamentary approval today, March 30, 2020, for the government's Covid-19 alleviation programme.

The programme will outline measures aimed at mitigating the impact of the Covid-19 on the economy.

It will focus on the practical measures being put in place to minimise the adverse impact on the economy.

President Akufo-Addo in his fourth national televised address on the state’s strategies to stem the spread of the Covid-19 in Ghana announced a relief package of at least GH¢1 billion for households and businesses, particularly small and medium scale enterprises.

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“The Minister for Finance has been directed by me to prepare, for approval by Parliament, a Coronavirus Alleviation Programme to address the disruption in economic activities, the hardship of our people, and to rescue and revitalise our industries.

“He will, then, immediately make available a minimum of one billion cedis (GH¢1 billion) to households and businesses, particularly small and medium scale enterprises.”

Also, commercial banks across are expected to support local industries, especially in the pharmaceutical, hospitality, service and manufacturing sectors with an estimated GH¢3 billion facility in response to the Bank of Ghana’s 1.5% decrease in Policy Rate and 2% in reserve requirement.

Additional relief to businesses which the President announced during the televised address is an extension of the tax filing date from April to June as well as a 2% reduction of interest rates by banks, effective April 1, 2020.

“All other sector credit exposures will be reviewed on a case by case basis; mobile money users can send up to GH¢100 for free; and a 100% to 300% increase in the daily transaction limits for mobile money transactions.”