Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has reiterated calls for stakeholders within the financial sector to introduce innovative ways to capture the unbanked into the digital payments ecosystem.
Delivering the keynote address at the launch of “Ghana Pay”, a shared electronic wallet product, Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia noted that this is critical to the acceleration of the government’s economic transformation agenda.
“With the functionalities that the GhanaPay wallet provides, banks can leverage to provide a wide variety of tailormade banking and wallet services to people who they previously could not reach. The option of providing customers with a combination of banking and traditional mobile money service gives the customer the power to do more,” he said.
The Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Ernest Addison, says, the introduction of GhanaPay complements the measures to accelerate Ghana’s migration to electronic payments. He is therefore encouraging the banking sector to collaborate and further explore more pioneering ways to attain greater efficiency in the payments ecosystem
“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, have also helped to bridge the financial inclusion gap. Beyond the opportunity to compete directly on product offerings and quality of services, the bank-FinTech collaboration would help in the realisation 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 minimise costs,” he noted.
A key approach to financial inclusion is the growth of mobile financial services. This provides a fresh perspective on digital transformation and demonstrates that technology can help modernise the financial system and support greater financial inclusion.
In Ghana, the financial sector has seen a significant change with the introduction of mobile money service platforms. The service over the years has transformed from being only a money transfer service to a mix of other financial services such as payments, savings and even loans.
For instance, in less than a decade, GhIPSS Instant Pay transactions valued at ¢420,000 in 2016 surged exponentially to ¢31.4 billion in 2021.
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.
Despite this more is being done by stakeholders within the financial space to improve financial inclusion and strengthen the gains made so far.
GhanaPay is a mobile money service platform provided by universal banks, rural banks and savings and loans companies to individuals and businesses.
It is a joint initiative of Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems Limited (GhIPSS) and the Ghana Association of Banks.
Operating like a Mobile Money Service, GhanaPay has additional banking services designed for financial freedom.
Anyone with access to a mobile phone can register for GhanaPay wallet with or without a bank account. Users of GhanaPay have access to unlimited banking services in addition to existing mobile money services. It forms part of the government’s National Financial Inclusion Agenda to reduce economic vulnerability and enhance the collaboration of banks and the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems Limited, GhIPSS.