The Agyapa Royalties deal which was proposed to mortgage the country’s royalties for cash to finance infrastructure projects, faced huge backlash from the public.
However, Professor Noel Tagoe believes the debate around the deal should become a national one which will center more on the valuation process and the impact it will have on the finances of the country.
“I think we need conversations broadly on financing that takes into consideration things like Agyapa, things like borrowing money if we have not been able to expand our tax base. But once you put it within a framework, and you say you’re going to use it to fund real infrastructure, how much is it going to lift off Gross Domestic Product, all things being equal. Then when we finance, we’re going to come back and do an impact assessment to say this is what is happening,” he said.
Speaking on the introduction of new taxes in the recent budget, Professor Tagoe, underscored that most Ghanaians lacked knowledge on the Agyapa deal.
He therefore urged the central players to find a solution to the conflict of interest and competent negotiators for the deal.
“I think most people have not understood Agyapa and most of the conversations that have taken place are really uninformed but that’s part of the suspicion and the many accusations back and forth. My understanding of the politics around Agyapa has been about conflict of interest of central players in government. That should stop; just cure the conflict of interest, that’s the easiest thing to do. The same with China and the barter; again comes with the issue of evaluation and our positioning in terms of our negotiations. We have to have astute negotiators sitting across the table,” he stated.
Read Full Story