Development Bank Ghana secures $800 million from shareholders …ready to kick-start operations

Development Bank Ghana (DBG) has received nearly $800 million from its shareholders to begin operations, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), KwaminaDuker, has said.

“To date, our capital and funding have come from the Government of Ghana, World Bank, European Investment Bank (EIB), African Development Bank (AfDB) and KfW.  DBG has GH¢1.2 billion in capital.  We have received funds in excess of $700 million from our shareholders and partners to on lend to partner financial institutions (PFIs) and provide capacity building,” he said.

Addressing the media in Accra yesterday ahead of the launch of DBG today, MrDuker said the bank was excited about the support it had continued to receive from development partners and the Government of Ghana (GoG).

The media engagement was also to introduce the board and management of the bank, namely Dr Yaw Ansu, chairman of the board, Charles Boamah, Mary Boakye, Nora Bannerman Abbott, Rosemary Yeboah, Stephan Leudesdorff, and Yaw Nsarkoh.

The management membersare Michael Mensah-Baah, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Dr Clement KwabenaOpuni-Frimpong, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Dr Prince Adjei, Risk Management Oversight, GiftyAfuaSackey, Chief Internal Auditor, El Farouk, Chief Information Security Officer, Ishmael NiiAdumoah Oku, Head Internal Control and Jocelyn Emma Ackon, Head of Human Capital.

MrDukersaid the bank was partnering with PFIs such as the CalBank, CBG, GCB and Fidelity Bank and provide them with funds to on lend to Small and Medium-scale Enterprise (SMEs) in the country, adding that DBG was planning to expand to include more commercial banks, as well as rural banks, microfinance institutions and savings and loans companies.

“We are also working with a number of partners who will improve the services and products available to SMEs such as the Association of Ghana Industries and Ghana Stock Exchange, Ghana Enterprise Agency, Ghana-Incentive-Based Risk-Sharing System for Agricultural Lending, Monetary Authority of Singapore, Standard Chartered Bank, Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry and UN Global Compact,” he said.

Those institutions, MrDuker said would provide capacity building, support agribusiness services, provide digital learning and lending platform, tax services and incubator services to nurture more SMEs to be able to access the DBG funds.

MrDuker said the bank was established to provide competitively priced funding for the growth of SMEs industry in the country due to the huge financing gap for the private sector, saying the financing gap for the manufacturing sector alone stood at more than GH¢100 billion.

He explained that the DBG would provide concessional lending to PFIs to on lend to SMEs, adding the focus of the bank was on agriculture and agribusiness, Information Technology, and manufacturing sectors.

Mr Duker said SMEs made significant contribution to national output and economic resilience and were estimated to employ more than 80 per cent of workforce and generate some 70 per cent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product.

“Despite this enormous contribution they are underserved when it comes to long-term loans,” he said, adding that “In 2020, just under 10 per cent of loans in the banking industry were to companies in the manufacturing and agricultural sectors.”

“DBG has been designed to help relieve critical bottlenecks that have hindered the availability of long-term, competitively priced loans to SMEs in industry sectors that have the potential to transform the economy, namely agribusiness, manufacturing ICT and high-value services,” MrDuker said.

The GoG recognising the financing gap for the private sector and efforts to transform the economy decided to establish the DBG and consequently passed the Development Finance Act, 2020.

BY KINGSLEY ASARE

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