Banker faults ‘Senchi Consensus’ on BoG forex measures

The Managing Director of CAL Bank, Frank Adu Junior, says critics of the Central Bank’s forex measures that were meant to shore up the local currency, are not being realistic.

According to him, the Bank of Ghana had no choice than to institute restrictions on the use of the dollar as the medium of exchange in Ghana since the phenomenon, which he conceded has persisted for many years, cumulatively weakened the cedi.

One of the 22 recommendations of the ‘Senchi Consensus’ – proposals by non-partisan participant of the three-day National Economic Forum held in Senchi —  was that the “Bank of Ghana should expedite work on the assessment of the recently announced foreign exchange measures and take speedy and appropriate action to restore confidence and relieve the unintended consequences of the measures.”

But Mr Adu Junior told business journalists at the end of the forum that he disagreed with that particular recommendation.

“I do not really understand why people are blaming Bank of Ghana,” Mr Adu Junior said.

“Your fiscal activity – adventure or misadventure – will occasion a certain situation which has to be addressed and the central bank has such monetary tools and they have to employ those tools. So if you deal with your fiscal properly, this won’t happen…and mind you what is happening is not a matter of something that happened overnight. It’s long years of however we were handling our fiscal portfolio”, he stressed.

“So I don’t know what reviews we are expecting to come out of this. I don’t necessarily agree. All I know is that for me as a Ghanaian, our currency is the cedi. That’s the currency we mint. That’s the currency we control. So just as we cannot substitute the cedi with the Kwatwa…so can we not substitute it with the pound, the dollar or the Euro. We should make sure the cedi works, period”, he adds.

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