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14.03.2012 Business & Finance

Compel Microfinance Companies To Join Association - BoG Urged.

By Jessica Acheampong - Daily Graphic
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The Chairman of the National Board of Ghana Association of Microfinance Companies, Mr Collins Amponsah-Mensah has urged the Bank of Ghana to make it mandatory for all microfinance institutions in the country to register with the association.

The Bank of Ghana had hitherto presuaded microfinance organisations in the country to register with the association and be issued with a license to operate. But some operators have not heeded to the call.

This, Amponsah-Mensa said would help the association to effectively monitor and regulate the operations of micro-finance institutions and help rid the industry of what he described as unscrupulous operators.

In an interview with the Graphic Business, Mr Amponsah-Mensah said as at end of the January 1, 2012, only 362 micro-finance institutions have registered while 150 operating institutions had applied for licenses.

He observed that due to lack of co-ordination between the Bank of Ghana and the Registrar General’s Department regarding registration and licensing, the association could not play any major role in ridding the industry of illegal operators.

He also urged all members to embrace the idea of licensing as this would bring sanity into the industry and give credibility to the operations of the industry.

Mr Amponsah-Mensah however said the association was also playing its role to ensure that more bodies join the association trhat would qualify them for a license the Bank of Ghana.

According to him “currently the association had set up two national secretariats in Accra and Kumasi to educate members and encourage other institutions to register with the association. We are also encouraging peer referencing among our members and monthly sensitisation meetings to encourage members to register.”

Commenting on whether the Bank of Ghana has given a hint for an extension Mr Amponsah-Mensah said there had not been any formal announcement but said the association would use these periods to continue to register new members.

“The Bank of Ghana understands the challenges associated with the registration and licensing as it takes time and the six months allocated was not enough,” Mr Amponsah-Mensah explained.

He added that the Rural and Agricultural Finance Programme (RAFiP) introduced by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning was a good initiative as it would enhance the capacity of most of these operators.

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