Veteran Ghanaian media personality, Kwasi Kyei Darkwah, alias KKD, has said that he is worried about the lack of transparency in the meetings the Minister for Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, has been having with the Chinese government on the repayment of Ghana’s debts.
According to him, the notion that Ofori-Atta is going to seek debt cancellation is totally wrong because the Chinese will never forgive Ghana’s debts.
Speaking in an Onua TV interview, on Wednesday, which was monitored by GhanaWeb, KKD added that what Ghanaians should be worried about are the concessions, Ofori-Atta is making in his closed-door meetings with the Chinese government.
“China is only focused on its own development. It is developing so much, so that, no matter how sophisticated you are, you will come to them for some technology, you will come to them to produce your goods and you will come to them to borrow.
“I heard that Ofori-Atta said he is going to China for bilateral talks. You are going to beg and you are saying you are going for bilateral talks.
“You think the Chinese are fools? They are not going to cancel our debt. They will take something for whatever they have given us. Now the question is; what are we giving China behind closed doors for them to forgive our debts,” he said in Twi.
The Minister for Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, according to Asaase radio, left Accra for China on Sunday (March 19, 2023).
Ofori-Atta’s trip to Beijing is hinged on efforts to secure a deal for restructuring of Ghana’s bilateral debts with the Asian economic powerhouse.
Even though Ghana is seeking a US$3 billion facility from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the need to restructure both domestic and external debts has been given as a key conditionality.
China is a key player relative to Ghana’s external debtors, holding about $1.7 billion of Ghana’s $5.5 billion bilateral debt.
According to the Ghana Business News portal, the specialised nature of their lending windows means that Ghana cannot add them to the model used to negotiate with the G20 and the Paris Club members.
Talks with China were originally slated for mid-February but they were postponed to late March 2023.