According to President Akufo-Addo, “borrowing money is not aid” but rather a loan which would be paid back by the receiving country anyway.
According to him, “borrowing money is not aid” but rather a loan which would be paid back by the receiving country anyway.
Last week, former President John Mahama was highly critical of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) government, insisting the current administration has borrowed a whopping $50 billion in its 20 months in office.
The issue of borrowing was once again put before the President during an entrepreneurship forum organised by the Tony Elumelo Foundation in Nigeria on Thursday.
Asked if his government’s frequent borrowing from China betrays his much-touted Ghana Beyond Aid mantra, President Akufo-Addo said borrowing cannot be considered as aid.
“Borrowing money is not aid. What President Xi Jinping offered is a $60 billion fund which African countries can access, not as aid but as loans. If you can produce a project that the Chinese think is worth supporting, you can have access to that money, but you have to pay it back,” he said.
The President further defended his government’s frequent borrowings, saying even a superpower like the US borrows.
He explained that it is very necessary for developing countries like Ghana to borrow in order to put up projects, which he described as “assets”.
“We will borrow money; everybody borrows money. The United States of America is one of the biggest debtors in the world. So borrowing money is not necessarily a betrayal of the concept of independence,” President Akufo-Addo stated.
“The key for us in borrowing money is that we borrow money to create assets that will allow us to pay the money back. That is the key…If we borrow the money and use it properly it is an asset for us in expanding our economy and infrastructure.”
The President’s recent comments seem to be in to in stark contrast to what the NPP said while in opposition, when they party described the then ruling NDC’s knack for loans as “reckless and worrying”.