Accra, A one-week regional course on government Finance Statistics organised by the West African Institute for Financial and Economic Management (WAIFEM) in collaboration with the Bank of Ghana is underway in Accra.
The training programme which brought together 24 participants from Ghana, the Gambia, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone was to expose them to understand how existing fiscal data could be used effectively.
It was also to give participants an insight about how to improve on the sourcing of data and to optimise it in fiscal analysis and explore issues related to data reporting to the International Monetary Fund as well as good practices in special data dissemination standard.
Dr Ernest Addison, Governor of Bank of Ghana, speaking at the opening session explained that government Finance Statistics Manual was an internationally accepted accrual accounting framework for government statistics, fully integrated into the United Nations System of National Accounts framework.
He said the framework provided a basis for analysing public investment while providing a common language that fiscal analysts can use to develop a reliable approach to handling new and complex government operations.
Government Finance Statistics plays an important role in helping policymakers, analysts, academicians and the public to understand the financial operations, financial position and liquidity situation of the general government sector in an organised manner, he added.
Dr Addison said it was the responsibility of governments to design fiscal and monetary policies that would guide the economy in a sustainable manner, hence the need for the training course.
The Governor said in terms of sustainability, the framework provides net worth leading indicators to assess medium and long-term impact of government policies, and a comprehensive assessment of the financial position.
He urged the participants to optimise the opportunity to enhance their knowledge and skills to improve fiscal policies of their respective countries.
Prof Akpan Ekpo, Director General of WAIFEM, said WAIFEM was established by the central banks of Ghana, The Gambia, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone in 1996 to build capacity for improved macro-economics and financial management in the constituent member countries.
He said after completion of the course, participants were expected to understand and explain the framework according to the government Finance Statistics Manual 2014 classifications.
Source: Ghana News Agency