Absa to play significant role in banking sector -MD

Barclays Bank Ghana Limited has commenced operations as Absa Bank Ghana Limited, a subsidiary of Absa Group Limited, after receiving all the required regulatory approvals from the Bank of Ghana (BoG).

The move to rebrand Barclays to Absa started in 2016 when Barclays announced intention to reduce ownership in Barclays Africa and gradually sold part of its shares to investors through the South African South Exchange.

Barclays Africa Limited in July 2008 changed its name to Absa Group Limited, and planned to rebrand its Ghana subsidiary in the year 2020.

Bank of Ghana in May last year approved the request of Barclays Bank Ghana to change its name to Absa Bank Ghana Limited.

Speaking at a ceremony in Accra yesterday to officially begin trading as Absa Bank Ghana Limited, the Managing Director of Absa Bank Ghana Limited, Mrs Abena Osei-Poku said the name change marked the start of a new era for the bank’s operations as a forward-looking African bank with global reach.

“Today, we begin a new chapter as Absa Bank Ghana Limited, while we retain our 100-year heritage of indelible commitment to Ghana’s economic growth.  Our new brand demonstrates our commitment to building a bank that is centred on growth for our people through the provision of financial resources, services and opportunities that connect their dreams and possibilities,” she said.

She said the bank had been the most profitable in the industry for the past three years.

The bank she said had been a major financier and contributor to key sectors of the Ghanaian economy including agriculture, education, health, industry and infrastructure.

She said under the Absa brand, the bank would play a significant role in the financial services sector and the country’s economic development.

“As one of Africa’ to three largest banks, backed by a large capital base and balance sheet, we will continue to play a leading role in Ghana’s development agenda while we remain focused on serving Ghanaians with quality groundbreaking financial services and safe investments for their hard-earned money.  Our destiny is tied to that of our country and our commitment to Ghana is absolute,”Mrs Osei-Poku said.

The Managing Director said the change to Absa would not cause any change in customers account details and the bank’s branches would continue to operate as usual.

 The Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia in his address commended Barclays Bank Ghana Limited for the seamless rebranding to Absa Bank Ghana Limited.

He said the bank had played leading role in deepening financial inclusion and helping in the development of the country.

Dr Bawumia said Absa Bank Ghana is supporting the Ghana for the establishment of the African Continental Free Trade Area secretariat in the country.

The Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr Ernest Addison in his address said Absa Bank Ghana was launching at a time when the banking industry was liquid and profitable.

He said the reforms embarked upon by the BoG were beginning to yield results.

Dr Addison entreated the management of the bank to continue to put strong risk control system and good corporate governance structures in place to ensure the sustainability of the bank.

The Governor further entreated Absa Bank Ghana to consider listing on the Ghana Stock Exchange to give opportunities to own a share in the bank.

By Kingsley Asare

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