Dr. Ernest Addison is Governor of the Central Bank
The Bank of Ghana has disclosed of plans to cap the number of financial technology firms operating in Ghana.
The central bank has bemoaned what it says is the proliferation of fintechs in Ghana’s financial system. Currently, there are seventy-one fintechs providing solutions to businesses and individuals.
Following the impact of cyber fraud with the rise in the use of digital platforms, a new Payment Systems law is expected to be passed by Parliament to sanitise the space soon.
Speaking at Citi Fm and Citi TV’s FinTech Summit, the Head of Payment Systems at the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Settor Amediku said the new law will limit the number of fintechs to be licensed.
“We have drafted a new Bill which is currently before cabinet…when the Bill is passed by Parliament, the Fintechs will have to comply. There will be chaos in the financial system if we are unable to control who enters the market to provide any payment services systems,” he stated.
Dr. Amediku added, “We need to regulate the environment since we at the central bank are concerned about the financial system. So when the Bill is passed into the Act, we will pay particular attention to minimum corporate governance, anti-money laundering issues, data protection among others.”
According to the central bank, a fin tech may be deemed qualified to sustain its operations if it complies with three broad directives including; tech, security and controls, governance arrangements as well as principles of consumer protection.
For tech, security and controls, a fintech is expected to possess a tested technology system which is equipped with fraud monitoring and detection tools; a valid third-party certification from a reputable certification authority in line with relevant standards determined by the Bank of Ghana.
Also, complying with governance arrangements means that the fintech is required to have a board of directors with a minimum of five members, at least three of whom, including the chief executive officer, shall be resident in the country.
Again, the company must disclose to the Bank of Ghana details of its external auditors and any relation to the directors, key management personnel or shareholders.
Meanwhile, fin techs are expected to be transparent and disclose to their customers, clear, sufficient and timely information on the fundamental benefits, risks and terms of any product or service offered in an objective and accessible form.
Already twenty-one banks are in partnerships with the fin techs for the provision of services.