Session 1: Macroeconomic Management in a Constrained Fiscal Environment
On Monday, June 15, 10:30am -12:30pm, Dr. Ibrahim Stevens, IGC Country Programme Director, chaired AGF’s first session, Macroeconomic Management in a Constrained Fiscal Environment. Professor Nada Eissa, IGC Lead Academic for South Sudan, led discussion regarding Efficient and Equitable Taxation, during which she presented on the composition of taxes and aggregated revenue performance in Sub-Saharan Africa. She was followed by Dr Louis Kasekende, Deputy Governor of the Bank of Uganda, who presented Macroeconomic Management in A Constrained Fiscal Environment. Dr Kasekende’s presentation comprehensively reviewed the competing challenges of fiscal expansion for growth, affordable credit to the private sector, and inflation and liquidity management. Then a policymaker from Ghana discussed contributing factors to Ghana’s present fiscal constraints, particularly falling commodity prices, the statutory nature for the budget, and the accumulation of arrears and interest. The session concluded with a presentation by Dr Francis Chipimo, Director of Economics and the Bank of Zambia, who outlined current policy challenges, including supporting necessary investment, improving revenue generation and mobilization, and tax administration. The session left the audience to further consider the questions of the optimal level of fiscal deficit, the appropriate pace for fiscal consolidation, and the role of Central Banks in facilitating development and financial inclusion.
By Anne Laski, Country Economist, IGC Liberia