Bank of Ghana to establish a digital currency

First Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana (BoG), Dr Maxwell Opoku-Afari says the bank is working to establish a sandbox to encourage innovation in the market, and also test concepts such as a Central Bank Digital Currency.

First Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr Maxwell Opoku Afari

Dr Opoku-Afari said this during the virtual stakeholder workshop on Payment Systems and Service Act, 2019 (ACT 987).

He explained that Ghana’s economy has undergone phenomenal transformation over the past decade. This he said has led to the growing adoption of digital technology.

“Individuals, businesses, and government have shown strong preference for digital payments for reasons of convenience, efficiency, speed, affordability, round the clock availability and robust audit trail.”

He further indicated that besides the evolving consumer preferences, digital innovations like the Bitcoin loophole platform, have proven the ability to address the financial exclusion problems, citing the success of mobile money in Ghana as an example.

Dr Opoku-Afari said that BoG, through the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPSS), has seen to the implementation of a portfolio of modern and robust interbank payments systems. He said such systems included e-Zwich, GIP, ACH, GH-Link, and Mobile Money Interoperability and the establishment of the foundation for nationwide digital delivery of financial services.

“The role of Fintechs in innovating on these infrastructures to meet various needs of society is paramount. We look forward to seeing deep collaboration between GhIPSS and Fintechs (Payment Service Providers) to harness the potential of these systems for the benefits of society.”

“Hopefully, you have heard recent announcements of licence application approvals for some Payment Service Providers. We will continue to work with you to ensure that you are taken through the licencing process to enable you deliver value to consumers and the broader financial sector.”

Act 987 is a product of active collaboration between Bank of Ghana and public and private sector stakeholders including the Ministry of Finance, Attorney General’s Department, National Communications Authority, Ghana Association of Bankers, Telecoms Chamber, FinTech Chamber, and development partners.

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