Ghana’s agricultural, and small scale enterprise (SME) sectors are expected to witness a major transformation this year as one of the country’s most formidable banks has announced its intention to rump up its financial support for the two sectors.
Meant to unlock the potential of two of the most important sectors of the economy in line with government’s overall ambitions for the year, the move by Consolidated Bank Ghana (CBG), is expected to boost food production to contain inflation, ensure food security and expand exports, as well as create jobs for the mass of the people while providing a source of livelihood for small businesses which are in dire need of capital.
The bank which was formed some five years ago through the amalgamation of seven defunct banks during the country’ financial sector crisis, has received a whopping GH¢2.5 billion from its sole shareholder, the government, through bonds the issuance of bonds under the Ghana Financial Stability Fund.
The fund was set up by the government to specifically cater to the financial needs of banks which balance sheets were impaired as a result of the implementation of the Domestic Debt Exchange Programme (DDEP).
Throwing some more light on the SME sector at a news conference in Accra, the Managing Director of the bank, Daniel Wilson Addo, said CBG had played a pivotal role in providing as much as GH¢1.6 billion in loans to cover 5,600 businesses; introduced innovative programmes such as the ‘CBG SME loan Adesua’ series and optimising loan processing for swift access.
“The initiatives in the SME sector have earned the bank various awards including the Euromoney Award for SME Market leadership in 2022 and 2023.”
He said in corporate and institutional banking segment, CGB has participated in loans totaling GH¢2.35 billion, either as a lead arranger or transaction adviser, benefitting crucial sectors such as energy, tourism and education.
Mr Addo said “in the immediate future, CBG would deepen investment in digitisation, upscale support to SMEs, further prioritse customer service and ensure greater operational efficiency.”
The overriding ambition is to build market leadership in SME financing while building a resilient institution.