Accra, 5th April 2023 - The Ministry of Finance in collaboration with the World Bank, Bank of Ghana, and other financial institutions, has launched the National Financial Education Campaign Programme.
The main aim of the program is to strengthen Ghanaians’ financial capabilities and promote responsible financial behaviours since the current development in the country’s economic and financial sector, underlines the need for a more timely and all-inclusive financial education program which lectures the noticeable problems in the financial sector.
The event saw the congregation of industry players in the financial sector which included representatives from the World Bank, Bank of Ghana, Securities and Exchange Commission, National Pensions Regulatory Authority, National Insurance Commission, and the Ghana Microfinance Institutions Network.
A Deputy Finance Minister, Madam Abena Osei-Asare, in her keynote address commended the World Bank for their continuous support to the development of the Ghanaian economy and, for sponsoring the design and roll-out of the National Financial Education Campaign.
She revealed that, many Ghanaians lacked the basic understanding of key financial issues such as the impact of inflation on the value of their money, computation of interest on loans and investments, awareness and use of financial products and services among other things. This, she noted had made it difficult for them to make any informed financial decision.
“Indeed, financial capability of consumers is a major component to building a strong and resilient economy. Without this, many people will resort to the old and unsecured ways of handling monies, such as keeping monies under pillows and mattresses,” she said.
The structure of the financial education campaign allows for radio and TV discussions, public fora, townhall engagements, and social media campaign. Different educational materials have been developed and translated from English into eleven (11) local languages, namely, Ga, Akwapim Twi, Asante Twi, Ewe, Sefwi, Nzema, Dagomba, Dagaare, Kusaal, Mamprugu and Gonja.
The Deputy Minister who is also the Member of Parliament for Atiwa East further stated that, despite the major impact of global pandemic shocks and the domestic debt exchange programme, the Ghanaian financial sector remained resilient, and that the Monetary Policy Committee, in its most recent release, alluded to the banking industry's relative stability despite recording some losses from the Domestic Debt Exchange Program (DDEP).
She urged the media to take deliberate steps to evaluate products being advertised by financial institutions before advertising these products. She added that, people were highly influenced by financial products and services advertised on radio and television.
The Director of the Financial Sector Division of the Ministry, Mr. Sampson Akligoh, welcoming participants on behalf of the Chief Director of the Ministry of Finance, Dr. Patrick Nomo noted that, the campaign was designed through a collaborative effort by financial sector regulators and industry associations.
He stated that, some financial institutions were not licensed to provide financial services to the public and but were operating illegally in the country.
This, he regretted had resulted in loss of monies (deposits and investments) of many households and business as these institutions bolted with the monies of their depositors and investors.
“To prevent a full-blown financial crisis, the Government through the financial sector regulators between 2017 and 2019 embarked on a comprehensive reform agenda with the aim of ridding the financial sector off illegal, illiquid and insolvent financial institutions as well as to strengthen the regulatory and supervisory framework of the sector”, Dr Nomo said.
He concluded by urging the general public to ensure the financial institutions they wished to work with, were duly licenced and working under regulatory bodies.
Giving an overview of the financial literacy campaign, the chairperson of the Financial Education Multi-Stakeholder Committee (FEMCOM), Mrs. Patience Arko Boham, disclosed that, Asamoah and Williams Consulting and Trans Media Network, was procured to assist in the design and implementation of a five-year national financial literacy strategy (2021-2025) to serve as a blueprint for bolstering the financial capacity of Ghanaians.
“It is important to mention that throughout the process, the World Bank played a pivotal role by providing technical assistance to the team and providing insights from other country experiences to ensure the design of a campaign that will create lasting impact on Ghanaians” she added.
There were solidarity messages from stakeholders including the Bank of Ghana, Securities and Exchange Commission and National Insurance Commission.
The Campaign is scheduled to be conducted in all the sixteen (16) regions of Ghana and predominantly target the informal sector and youth groups. END