Report By: Ishmael Barfi
The banking sector according to the President of the Republic is beginning to yield positive result as a result of the prudent measures taken by his administration and the Bank of Ghana.
These measures he says was to sanitize as well save the banking sector from collapsing, hence restoring the confidence of investors and stakeholders in the banking sector.
His Excellency, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo made these remarks during the formal opening of the new head office building of Calbank on Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019 in Accra.
To him, “at the end of the first quarter of 2019, the banking industry performance in total assets, total deposits and net loans and advances, all saw positive growth.”
Meanwhile, according to the March 2019 Banking Sector Report of the Bank of Ghana, “an assessment of the banking sector’s performance during the first two months of 2019 showed a well-capitalized, profitable, liquid and stable sector with strong prospects for increased financial intermediation.”
This, the President indicated that “it is evident that the measures we took saved the banking industry from a very dire situation, characterized by the existence of several weakly capitalized banks, with balance sheets encumbered by a multitude of low performing loans, pursuing bad business models with poor governance practices, and, largely, non-existent central bank regulation.”
Furthermore these measures he stressed did not only save the deposits of some 1.5 million Ghanaians, their businesses and the people they employed, but also minimized job losses in the banking sector.
With regards to new head office edifice of CalBank, the President described it as an impressive piece of architecture and thanked the bank for proven itself to be a solid bank as well as an integral part of Ghana’s economic story over the last three decades.
On government part, Nana Akufo Addo indicated that, it will continue to work and build a durable financial sector, with Ghanaian banks, hopefully, leading the charge.
Stressing, “We will work with financial institutions and regulators to promote digital finance and mobile money usage, and, thereby, formalize the Ghanaian economy”.
Revealing that, “Already, mobile money penetration in Ghana is the second highest in Africa, and, with reforms to our payment system, we anticipate that Ghana will have a strong competitive edge in the region for financial innovation and access to credit and adding that, government through the Bank of Ghana is also working hard to reduce interest rates which to him, “our efforts have yielded some modest successes.”
The President therefore assured the banking sector that his government will continue to encourage domestic champions to grow, and take significant positions in key sectors of the economy.
Believing that, the success of CalBank shows that, with hard work, ingenuity, innovation and creativity, his government and Ghana can realise the vision of a Ghana Beyond Aid”.
As Co-Chair of the United Nations Secretary General’s Group of Eminent Advocates on the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), President Akuffo Addo was gratified by CalBank’s decision to use clean, affordable energy from the 500 Kilo Watt solar plant installed in their facility, in realization of Goal 7 of the SDGs.
On gender balance, he expressed his gladness of more women occupying management positions than men at the bank which to him clearly shows that, the Board and Management of the bank understands the importance of the SDG goal five (5) and their beneficial impact on business.
The President, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo indicated that the formal opening of the new office building is the start of a new exciting chapter of growth and innovation for CalBank and therefore congratulated the Board Chair, Members of the Board, Managing Director, and the management and staff for bringing CalBank thus far.