We’ll deal with land ownership next year – Veep

Vice President Dr Bawumia (right) exchanging greetings with some of the  participants at the conference.Photo.Ebo GormanThe Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has said that government will next year focus its attention on land registration to develop and boost growth in the mortgage market.

He said all lands would be digitalised to ensure proper ownership to reduce the rate of land litigation in the country.

“One of the big things we will be doing is to address land registration issues which is a big deal for the banking industry and financial service,” he said.

The vice president made these remarks in Accra yesterday   when he opened the 21st National Banking conference on the theme ‘Building a robust and sustainable banking system in Ghana’.

Dr Bawumia bemoaned how Ghana tops the high mortgage to income ratios in the world saying, “It is impossible for the mortgage market to progress if land titles cannot be ascertained”.

He stated that government was determined to write the unwritten rules in banking and play its role in ensuring a sound economy within which a sound banking industry can operate.

“We are determined to peruse economic policies to develop physical discipline while putting the economy in a path to sustainable growth,” he said.

He challenged the banking sector to work hard and raise the bar of the banking industry and develop innovative financial product.

The Vice President described the theme for the conference as that which was relevant in light of the robust development taking place in the banking sector.

Dr Bawumia stated that the banking sector was undergoing reforms to meet the recapitalisation requirements set up by the central bank.

He called for a good coordination between physical and monitoring authorities adding that the macro economy must be stabilised as high interest rates and debts had slowed growth in the financial sector.

The Vice President was positive that the conference would present opportunities for the bankers to deliberate on the policies and programmes required to strengthen the banking sector as a weak banking sector cannot support national development.

Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, the Minister of Finance said a robust banking system was vital for growth, job creation and higher living standards as it feeds directly into the entire financial structure of the country.

“Per statistics, total banking assets for the first 10 months in 2017 reached GH¢88.9 billion as compared to GH¢73.8 billion for the same period last year, The total asset grew by 32.9 per cent as of July 2017 comparative to an annual growth rate of 24.6 per cent in July 2016, while the total banking sector asset to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) as of September was 50 per cent,” he said.

The Finance Minister stressed the need for the banking sector to improve transparency and data availability for both consumer protection, development of an efficient financial market and better pricing of debt and equity.

By Linda Naa Deide Aryeetey

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