The Bank of Ghana (BoG) has asked Rural and Community Banks (RCBs) in the country to re-strategize to achieve the projected 10 percent share of the banking industry by 2017.
‘As at March 2014, RCBs’ total assets of GH¢1,864 million accounted for 3.86 percent of total assets of the banking industry compared with 4.71 percent as at March 2013,’ the Central Bank disclosed.
Raymond Amanfu, Director in charge of other Financial Institutions Supervision Department of BoG, stated that out of the total assets of GH¢1,864 million, 26 rural banks accounted for 50.9 percent.
According to him, by the end of March 2014, RCBs’ deposits and credits recorded GH¢1,864.55 million and GH¢716.98 million respectively, representing year-on-year growth of 13.95 percent and 12.66 percent respectively.
The BoG Director made the observation at a day’s technical assistance seminar in Kumasi on Tuesday for RCBs.
‘The recent increase in the capital of RCBs to GH¢300,000 should be your target. Strive towards a higher level, as banks with greater capital have the ability to withstand shocks,’ he admonished.
He noted that credit risk continues to pose great challenge to the rural banks and asked the banks to begin the re-training of their credit staff, revise credit underwriting standards and improve collection strategies.
‘RCBs must be up to speed with technological risk associated with both software and hardware systems – dual controls, management of passwords, and access to data, and data transmission must be closely monitored.
Samuel Dankwa of Databank Limited entreated RCBs to list on the Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE).
The Databank official said the Ghana Alternative Market (GAX) is a parallel market to the GSE.
‘The focus here is on companies which have growth potential. The requirements for listing on the GAX aren’t as rigid as for the official list because the GSE is trying to provide an avenue for small and medium scale businesses to grow,’ Dankwa noted, and added that the GAX affords companies the opportunity to move onto the official list later on.
From Ernest Kofi Adu, Kumasi
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