GhIPSS Urges Banks To Use More Cards

Banks have been asked to adopt the various initiatives by Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPSS) to better the lot of their customers.

The Chief Executive of GhIPSS, Archie Hesse made the remarks in an interview on the sidelines of a Breakfast meeting with heads of retail and corporate banking in accra.

The meeting was to keep the bankers abreast with the various initiatives, as well as the new initiatives that would be rolled out soon.

Mr. Hesse noted that along with the country’s development, customers’ needs are changing rapidly which requires that banks adopt payment systems to create convenience for the banking public.

The GhIPSS CEO spoke of the various initiatives including the ghlink set of services, the Direct Debit and Direct Credit automated Clearing House and electronic clearing of cheques and the various e-zwich services.

He explained that banks were the primary customers of GhIPSS, which was set up to deal with the public through banks.

He therefore noted that the success of its operations is tied to the banks.

Mr. Hesse explained that while the use of cheques remain very popular, not many people know about the express cheque which enable people to cash a third party cheque on the same day they present it to a bank.

He said this express cheque service comes handy for busy people and therefore urged banks to make such services known to their customers.

He touched on the complaints of some shareholders about receiving dividend paid to them which involves the cumbersome process of going to the post office to pick up the payment order before presenting them to the bank for payment.

The chief executive said the dividends of shareholders could be paid directly to their bank accounts through the Direct Credit system.

Mr. Hesse added that the Direct Credit could also be used for salary payments, suppliers payments, pension payments and interest payments, as well as individual payments.

Direct Debit, on the other hand, could be used for mortgage payments, insurance premiums, loan repayments and utility payments, he explained.

He said churches could use it for tithe and offerings payment while associations could use it for membership subscription and dues.

Since its establishment, GhIPSS has been working to introduce a number of electronic payment systems to reduce the level of cash transactions.

Though cash remains the dominant form of payment, the growth in the use of cheques, ATMs, Direct Credit and e-zwich Payment Distribution Systems suggests that there is some decline in the use of cash for payments.

He said a lot more could be done and that GhIPSS was taking various steps to see further growth in the volume and values of non-cash forms of payment transactions.

He said the patronage for gh-link ATMs have been phenomenal, adding that the focus now is to achieve similar success for the ghlink hybrid POSes.

‘Since it is now possible for you to use your local aTM card to shop at major shopping centres in accra and other cities, we need to get more people shopping and paying with cards and not cash and that is our focus,’ Mr. Hesse stressed.

He said GhIPSS was working closely with the banks to roll out a massive campaign to drive people to shop and pay with cards.

He expressed hope that the banks would support the national agenda of reducing cash transactions.

The GhIPSS CEO emphasized that all the initiatives present fantastic business opportunities for the banks.

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