The parent company of rural banks, ARB Apex Bank has told Citi Business News even though a few of its members are under financial distress majority are solvent hence are able to meet liquidity supply.
A newspaper report stated that 21 rural banks out of 143 are completely safe while the rest go through severe financially challenges, making them insolvent.
But speaking to Citi Business News, the Deputy Managing Director of ARB Apex Bank, Alex Awuah explained that about 26 banks are in distress while the majority are in good positions.
“We know that apart from the 26 banks that face some challenges, all the banks are in good business. The banks are serving the liquidity needs of their customers. We don’t have any challenges with them,” Mr. Awuah said stressing that most Rural and Community Banks are financially stable.
He explained that the Bank of Ghana has already undertaken an assessment of the health of Rural and Community Banks and will soon come out with plans to rescue the few that are in financial distress from collapse.
“For the banks that are challenged I think in some few weeks or months’ time, the Bank of Ghana is going to take the necessary actions to strengthen them,” he said.
Mr. Awuah maintained that it is erroneous for the picture to be painted as though majority of Rural and Community Banks are struggling when indeed only a few numbering 26 are those in distress.
He stated for example that Rural and Community Banks are crucial for financial inclusion, hence care must be taken not to erode confidence in the financial services they provide for people in the hinterlands.
“The fact is that when you go to places where this banks are located the people do not have access to financial intermediation. So their work is very important,” he said.
By: Lawrence Segbefia/citibusinessnews.com/Ghana