President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo urged the Bank of Ghana (BoG) to close the gap between its monetary policy rate and commercial bank lending rates to bolster the country’s rapid growth.
He said it was not fair that the central bank’s monetary policy rate stood at 13.5% while commercial banks lent to the private sector at 21% or more, adding that he was stifling the competitiveness of the sector, which was the engine of growth of the economy.
“To question the issue of high interest rates in Ghana and how the problem needs to be resolved to improve the competitiveness of the private sector in the country… I think the Bank of Ghana is best placed to lead this thought process and action.
“This is a gap that we must close if we are to achieve the vision of a Ghana with a globally competitive economy,” he said when swearing in to the 13 board members. Newly constituted Directors of the Central Bank at Jubilee House, Accra. , Friday.
The board, chaired by BoG Governor Dr Ernest Addison, includes Dr Maxwell Opoku-Afari, First Deputy Governor, Miss Elsie Addo Awadzi, Second Deputy Governor, Charles Kofi Adu Boahen, Minister of State, Ministry of Finance, and Prof. Eric Osei Asibey.
The others are Dr. Kwame Owusu- Nyantekyi, Dr. Samuel Nii-Noi Ashong, Mr. Jude Kofi Bucknor, Mr. Joseph Blignam Alhassan, Mr. Andrew Adinorte Boye-Doe, Ms. Angela Kyerematen-Jimoh, Ms. Comfort Ocran and Ms. Regina Ohene-Darko Adutwum.
The president told the board that the Central Bank has distinguished itself over the past four years and performed its duties impeccably, has proven to be a good banker for the government and a safe guardian. of the nation’s money.
He was encouraged by the many corporate governance measures that have been put in place by the BoG to mitigate future bank failures and “to ensure that we have a strong banking sector that can drive the government’s transformation agenda” .
President Akufo-Addo also welcomed the recent policy measures introduced by the BoG, saying they were in line with the overall goal of moving Ghana to a situation beyond aid.
He noted that the BoG’s recently introduced national gold purchase initiative has been a game-changer that would help transform the country’s domestic gold production value chain, and “will allow us to add value. value to our gold and establish transparency in the small-scale gold mining industry. in Ghana.
The President praised the central bank’s leading role in the digitization of the economy and said that the recent announcement of the central bank-backed pilot digital currency, the EDC, which would completely transform the architecture of Ghana’s payment systems would deepen financial inclusion and improve access to credit for small and medium enterprises.
He also praised the bank for its initiative and partnership with Singapore regulators and Ghana’s Ministry of Finance to develop a network of digital platforms serving as a global public infrastructure to boost SME growth in both countries.
“All of these have re-established the Bank of Ghana as an institution of excellence, reflecting the international recognition of the bank,” he said.
The President instructed the Board of Directors to draw on the vast experience of the members to ensure the formulation of the policies necessary for the achievement of the Bank’s objectives.
“I count on the board of directors with its diversity of experiences, talents and skills to support the bank’s agenda and help formulate the policies necessary to achieve its objectives. It’s an accusation I’m sure you would keep, ”he said.
In his remarks, Dr Addison pledged that the board would pursue prudent policies to consolidate the gains made over the past four years.
“Given the rich and diverse experience of the board, there is no doubt in my mind that together we can build on the solid foundations that were laid by our predecessors and take this institution to even greater heights.” , did he declare.