Barclays Bank of Ghana, now Absa Ghana Limited, has reintroduced its NewGold Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) product affirmed by the Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) & Security & Exchange Commission’s (SEC) as the only approved investment product that gives investors genuine exposure to gold.
The reintroduction was made during the release of the 2018 Absa Africa Financial Markets Index report.
Six years ago, Barclays Ghana broke the barrier and listed the NewGold Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) product.
Managing Director of Absa Ghana Limited, Madam Abena Osei-Poku, said “Now we believe the market needs this product. Asset managers, insurance companies and other investors need gold in their portfolio. Gold is safe, value preserving and eternally golden.”
She said the reintroduction of the investment product is to further strengthen customers’ investment portfolio which is in line with the bank’s new bold strategy to bring pioneering propositions and play a shaping role in the society.
Madam Osei-Poku noted that Barclays is optimistic about the outlook for Ghana and is keen to co-operate and collaborate with like-minded stakeholders and partners to identify and capitalize across the various opportunities that exist in Ghana and to reform the financial markets. She reassured that the Bank’s transition from Barclays Bank of Ghana to Absa Ghana Limited is progressing very well. “We have made considerable headway on this journey and are now in the process of attaining all the regulatory approvals before the June 2020 deadline.
“We are excited about the opportunity this presents. We are building an African bank with global scale that we will all be proud of” she said.
The second edition of the Absa Africa Financial Markets Index report revealed that Ghana now ranks fourth in market depth moving up by eight places from last year’s rankings. The report also revealed that Ghana made significant progress in Market Transparency, Tax & Regulatory Environment as compared to the ratings of last year.
The Index tracks financial market development in 20 countries across a range of indicators, provides benchmarks against which countries can measure their progress and also aids in the development of their financial market frameworks to enhance investor access and sustainable growth.
According to the report, Sub-Sahara African economies are under pressure from various domestic and external headwinds such as depreciating currencies, political uncertainty, capital flight, rising interest rates, declining commodity prices, lower than projected growth rates to name a few. Madam Osei-Poku noted that:
“As a bank, we are aware of the critical role that financial markets must play to cushion our economies by channelling the wealth of savers to those who can put it to long-term productive use. As aptly captured by the IFC: Efficient local capital markets create access to long-term, local currency financing which is the foundation for a thriving private sector- the key driver of jobs and growth.” She added that developing local capital markets is a strategic focus for Absa Group because the group sees this as a pre-requisite for transformative Economic growth on the continent.
Ghana/Starrfmonline.com/103.5FM/Senanu Damilola Wemakor