The Executive Director of Wholesale and Investment Banking of GCB Bank PLC, Mr Sam Aidoo, says the current economic crisis provides the opportunity to restructure the country’s economy from a service driven one.
He called for the building of a robust and resilient economy through technology, finance, investment, trade, and entrepreneurship.
Delivering the address on behalf of the Managing Director of the Bank, Mr Kofi Adomakoh at a forum in Accra, Mr Aidoo stressed the need for a deliberate focus to collectively invest in priority sectors of the economy to develop Ghana into an agro processing and light manufacturing led economy.
The two-day forum under the theme, ‘Building a robust and resilient economy through technology, finance, investment, trade and entrepreneurship’ is a GCB Bank sponsored event designed to stimulate ideas in support of national development.
Mr. Aidoo noted that the devasting effects of COVID-19 and the Russia-Ukraine war coupled with further domestic and external shocks have rekindled preexisting structural and macro-fiscal vulnerabilities that have yet tested Ghana’s economic resilience.
“As we speak, inflation is at a multi-year high; the Cedi has lost over 50 per cent of its value to the dollar and the other major trading currencies, imposing hardships on individuals and businesses alike. The elevated risks of debt distress have triggered a widespread reversal of capital, leaving the external balances in a vulnerable state and foreign reserves under serious pressure,” he said.
Mr Aidoo advised that, “we should never allow such a serious crisis to go to waste” and that Ghana must take advantage to restructure the economy and de-emphasize a reliance on imports as the first stage of industrialization in our quest to build a resilient economy.”
He called for a concerted use of technology to drive revenue collection, bring down costs of doing business as well as breaking down silos across all facets of the economy.
Mr. Aidoo further called for the institution of immediate measures to resolve the continuous depreciation of the Cedi.
The Chief Digital and Marketing Officer of the Bank, Mr Eric Coffie, who was a panelist on fintech, noted that the fintech space in Ghana is evolving.
He said there is so much to be done in the fintech area and stressed the need for collaboration with financial institutions.
Mr Coffie noted that almost all the fintech companies operating in Ghana are concentrating on payment and there was the need to explore the myriad of innovative solutions that the fintech space offers.