Posted: Friday 8th August 2014 at 19:06 pm

BoG retraces; scraps recent forex measures


The Bank of Ghana has amended foreign exchange measures it introduced earlier this year to stabilise the cedi.

The central bank says after “consultations with stakeholders and the general public as well as an analysis of the available data” it has decied to amend almost all the forex directives.

The Bank of Ghana in February introduced some measures to shore up the cedi against the major foreign currencies.

As part of the measures, it banned commercial banks and other financial houses from issuing cheques and cheque books on foreign exchange accounts (FEA) and  foreign currency accounts (FCA).

It also directed that banks in the country should not grant a foreign currency-denominated loan or foreign currency-linked facility to a customer who is not a foreign exchange earner. 

But a release Friday has annuled most of those directives.

Read the full realease from the BoG below:
REVISION TO FOREIGN EXCHANGE NOTICES
Pursuant to its mandate under the Foreign Exchange Act 2006 (Act 723), the Bank of Ghana, on February 4, 2014, issued three (3) Notices:

(i)         Additional Operating Procedures for Forex Bureaux in Ghana – NOTICE NO. BG/GOV/SEC/2014/01;

(ii)        Operations of Foreign Exchange Accounts (FEA) and Foreign Currency Accounts (FCA) – NOTICE NO. BG/GOV/SEC/2014/02; and

(iii)       Repatriation of Export Proceeds – NOTICE NO. BG/GOV/SEC/2014/ 03.

Subsequently the Bank of Ghana, on February 13, 2014, issued a Notice to clarify the aforementioned Notices – NOTICE NO. BG/GOV/SEC/2014/04.

In keeping with the Bank’s undertaking to review the foreign exchange measures, and following consultations with stakeholders and the general public as well as an analysis of the available data, the Bank of Ghana, on June 16, 2014 issued, NOTICE NO. BG/GOV/SEC/2014/09, to amend the rules on foreign exchange operations.

The Bank of Ghana continued to monitor the measures and having observed some implementation challenges and following further consultations, has decided to revise the rules on foreign exchange operations as follows:

1.         The limit of $1000.00 on over-the-counter foreign exchange cash withdrawal is removed.

2.         Exporters shall continue to repatriate in full export proceeds in accordance with the terms agreed between the trading parties. Such proceeds shall be credited to their FEAs and converted on need basis.

3.         FEAs and FCAs will continue to be opened and operated as they were before the Notices of February 4, 2014.

4.         Except for transfers from FEA to FCA which are still prohibited, all other transfers between accounts are permitted.

5.         For the avoidance of doubt :
i)          FCAs shall be fed only with unrequited transfers such as transfers from abroad for investment or embassy transfers.

ii)         FEAs shall be fed with foreign exchange generated from activities in Ghana such as proceeds from exports of goods and services.

6.         The threshold for transfers abroad without initial documentation remains at $50,000.00. Where documentation in respect of a transfer remains outstanding, any subsequent import transaction by an importer, irrespective of value, shall only be made on prior provision of documentation required for the current import transaction.

7.         Importers who use non – cash instruments (plastic cards) may continue to load up to $50,000 to meet their legitimate needs abroad subject to the necessary documentation requirements.

8.         Foreign currency denominated loans may be granted by resident banks to their customers subject to their own internal procedures and processes and in compliance with the risk management guidelines of the Bank of Ghana.

9.         Cheques and cheque books may be issued by banks to holders of FEAs and FCAs.

The Bank of Ghana reiterates that the Ghana cedi remains the sole legal tender in Ghana. Therefore, pricing, advertising, invoicing, receiving, and making payments for goods and services should be done in Ghana cedis, unless otherwise authorized by the Bank of Ghana.

Existing measures which are not amended by this Notice shall continue to remain in force. Story by Ghana | Myjoyonline.com | George Nyavor | [email protected]

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