* To improve intra-African payments
Governor of the Bank of Ghana (BoG) Dr. Ernest Addison has called for a multidimensional integrated solutions approach to tackle the inherent frictions in cross-border payments in Africa.
According to the World Economic Forum, payments which have always been the lifeblood of trade will be key for intra-African trade, which covers 55 countries with varying financial and monetary systems, especially with the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area agreement (AFCFTA).
Cross-border payments in Africa typically involve a third currency, such as the US dollar or euro, leading to high costs and long transaction times.
In his welcome address for the virtual Association of African Central Banks Annual Conference on Payment Systems, Dr. Ernest Addison noted that increased momentum in integrating payment systems on the continent is needed.
“To tackle these longstanding inherent frictions in cross-border payments requires a multidimensional integrated solutions approach, with strong stakeholder collaboration. Therefore to foster the transformation of payments systems infrastructure that supports economic diversification of the continent ongoing efforts at payment systems integration will require additional momentum.”
Dr. Addison meanwhile charged Central Bank Governors and other stakeholders tasked with ensuring the development and adoption of effective payment systems to consider mobile payment platforms as an affordable mode of payments.
“Mobile payment adoption is already high on the African continent, hence affordable intra-African mobile payment solutions should be explored to stimulate cross border retail payments and minimize the cost of regional operations especially for small and medium-sized enterprises.”