Ghana International Bank trains over 60 bankers in trade finance

 Ghana International Bank (GHIB), a whol­ly-Ghanaian bank incor­porated in the United Kingdom, has facilitated a trade finance training programme for over 60 bankers from across six West Afri­can countries.

The four-day training seminar in Ghana focused on various in­ternational trade finance products that banks can use in serving their customers.

Speaking to the media at the closing ceremony of the training held in Accra last week, Baafuor Ohene Abankwah, the Country Representative in Ghana and Head, Client Coverage Africa, said the training was part of GHIB’s efforts to deliver quality banking services and provide a bridge to Ghana’s banking institutions.

He said, “As a wholly-Ghana­ian bank incorporated in the UK, we have been the heart of trade finance in Africa for many years, dating back to the 1950s.” We be­lieve that we have a role to play in building trade finance capacity so we are passionate about organising such training programmes”.

“This is the eighth session, and we have over 60 bankers from across six countries in West Africa present to be equipped on how to facilitate trade between the coun­tries they represent and the rest of the world,” he said.

“Also, there are huge oppor­tunities for trade finance on the African continent. Here in Ghana, we have several products that are required in West Africa, and banks and financial institutions can do more to facilitate that. Some of the ways in which banks can do that are to provide the financing that allows factories to expand and businessmen to make and receive payments. “Banks have an important role to play, and inten­tional efforts such as this training to make sure we work together to promote trade in Africa will really help,” he added.

On his part, John Awuah, Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Association of Banks, said the training was timely for banks in West Africa to further under­stand trade finance instruments that can help in the African Conti­nental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

“The good thing about trade finance is that it makes transaction costs a bit manageable because it is cheaper compared to conven­tional financing, so trade finance products provide that bridge that enables businesses to access financing in a more cost-effective manner.”

“We have had a very engag­ing session with the facilitators of this programme focused on understanding trade finance instruments, the instruments that we use to undertake international trade as banks working for our customers. We can only refer the right financial instruments to our customers to undertake the trade and get their goods delivered to their doorstep when banks better understand this topic,” he said.

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