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Business News of Thursday, 16 June 2022


GhIPSS Instant Pay transactions hit GH¢31.4 billion

Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Ernest Addison Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Ernest Addison

Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement System (GhIPSS) Instant Pay transactions hit GH¢31.4 billion in 2021, from GH¢420,000 in 2016, as electronic payment systems continue to grow rapidly.

In tandem, both the value of mobile money transactions and registered mobile money agents also increased thirteen and four-fold, respectively, in 2021.

Another key development was that Ghana’s cash usage measured by currency in circulation as a ratio of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) declined from 6.8% in 2016 to 4.7% in 2021. In addition, Ghana’s cheque usage per capita, which was 25.67 in 2016, declined to 18.9 in 2021.

Speaking at the launch of GhanaPay, a mobile bank wallet for Banks, Savings and Loans Companies, as well as Rural and Community Banks, Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Ernest Addison, said Ghana’s progress in migrating to electronic payments has been laudable.

According to him, the emergence of new business models in the banking sector, together with partnerships with financial technology (FinTechs) companies in the offering of payment-related services, has also helped to bridge the financial inclusion gap.

Beyond the opportunity to compete directly on product offerings and quality of services, the Governor said the bank-FinTech collaboration would help in the realization of common objectives and enable participants to achieve economies of scale in the expansion of the payment networks, as well as reach a critical mass of financial inclusiveness in the country.

“This collaboration is commendable and should therefore be sustained since payments represent an indispensable activity for businesses and individuals. Improving efficiency in financial transactions through electronic payments would not only increase productivity but also minimize costs”, he mentioned.

“Today’s launch of GhanaPay is one of such innovations in the financial sector that seeks to address some of the challenges associated with the current bank-centric models by providing an open application that leverages on the network infrastructure of the entire banking industry”, Dr. Addison added.

With GhanaPay, merchants do not necessarily need to maintain banking relationships with several banks to receive bill payments from other bank customers. In addition, customers only need to maintain an account with a bank to make bill payments to the entire network of customers and merchants registered with GhanaPay.

GhanaPay, therefore, facilitates resource pooling from the entire banking industry and reduces duplication. It is expected that the industry will be guided by this innovation and continue to retool and respond to the changing environment.

In a speech to launch the system, Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, announced that the new digital age requires collaboration from all stakeholders, including the financial services providers, to ensure a secured payment ecosystem.

Chief Executive of GhIPSS, Archie Hesse, said the platform would be used to tackle the challenge facing the rural unbanked population.

According to him, this is critical for the digital economy agenda.

“This initiative gives the banks an opportunity of a platform to issue mobile money accounts to customers and individuals that can’t secure banking account for one reason or the other. So, we don’t rely solely on the fintech and mobile money agents for transactions on the mobile money platform.”

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