Support BoG to reform financial sector – Barclays MD

The Managing Director of Barclays Bank Ghana, Abena Osei-Opoku has called on stakeholders in the banking sector to support the Bank of Ghana (BoG) in its drive to sanitise and reform the financial sector.

According to her, these reforms are not only necessary but important in the transformation agenda of the country,

“These are busy and economic tough times for the regulator, banks, shareholders, the boards, employees and some customers…….I urge all stakeholders to continue to support the BoG to ensure the successful economic transformation,” she stressed.

Mrs. Osei-Poku made the call at the seventh edition of the Ghana Economic Forum (GEF), which opened in Accra yesterday.

This year’s event is on the theme: ‘Building a competitive economy for sustainable growth’ and it is being organised by the Business & Financial Times (B&FT) in partnership with the Barclays Bank.

It attracted professionals from diverse backgrounds including: economic policy makers, implementation agencies, members of trade and industry associations, diplomatic missions, donor agencies and non-governmental organisations.

The Managing Director explained that a strong and efficient financial sector constituted the backbone for any major economic transformation, as a result the path taken by the regulator in recent times would not only sanitise the system but would also act as  support for the transformation agenda of the government.

She said the banking sector was going through challenging cycles and required that banks and individuals adhered to best risk management principles, a very robust corporate governance and ethical behaviour to pursue overambitious growth.

“When economies are broken, unfortunately they coincide with large risk management globally creating problems. Being cognisant that the economy goes through various phases, bankers and financial market players must innovate and offer financial solutions that respond to the cyclical nature of the economy,” she emphasised.

She said Barclays Bank Ghana was devoted to play a shaping role in contributing to a prosperous society as well as promoting inter-generational sustainability to help drive information sharing and inspire businesses through stimulating discussions.

Mrs. Osei-Poku further explained that these discussions could lead to sustainable solutions that would boost Ghana’s economic development and grow key sectors of the economy and ultimately bring the possibilities of Ghanaians to life.

“This commitment towards shaping an active source of good in our society is central to our desire to build a forward open bank that Ghana and Africa would be proud of,” she affirmed.

She said Barclays was one of Africa’s largest and most diversified financial services groups which offers integrated steps of solutions across for its customers.

With over $100billion on its balance sheet, she said the bank was one of Africa’s largest and most diversified financial services group with a staff population of more than 42,000.

Mrs. Osei-Poku said the bank had rebranded to ABSA Group and evolved a new strategy following Barclays PLB’s successful completion of sales reduction from 52.3 per cent to 14.9 per cent, stressing that “this has given us the opportunity to create a strong bank across Africa with global scale making Barclays one of Africa’s largest and most diversified financial services group”.

By Cliff Ekuful &Allia Noshie

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