Licensing 500 MFIs At A Go Wrong – Spio Garbrah

Ghana’s former Trade and Industry Minister, Mr Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, has questioned the approach of the Bank of Ghana (BoG) in licensing financial institutions.

The central bank recently revoked the licences of 9 local banks and 386 microfinance institutions due to severe impairment of their capital, as part of government's strategy to clean up the banking sector.

According to Mr Spio-Garbrah, the central bank erred in licensing so many MFIs. In his opinion, the issuance of operating licences should have been staggered based on performance.

Speaking to Class FM after the ‘Get It Right Clinic 2019’ meeting in Accra for the youth and entrepreneurs, Mr Spio-Garbrah raised concerns about the central bank’s criteria for issuing licences.

“I don’t think the Bank of Ghana (BoG) should have ever issued 500 microfinance licences in the first place. Under normal circumstances, you would have expected them to issue a few at a time,” he said.

The former minister said he was convinced that the central bank has learnt lessons from the clean-up exercise which will inform the tightening of regulations to prevent the recurrence of past errors and engender “reforms in the insurance industry, microfinance, rural banks and other institutions to ensure greater health in our economy”.

the former Communication Minister has also charged the Ghanaian business community to have integrity, a problem-solving mindset and emotional intelligence in order to thrive.