Ghana: Government to Adopt E-Payment System As Only Mode of Payment

By Rex Mainoo Yeboah

In line with global trends, Government will soon end cash payment settlements and resort to e-payment systems only in transacting business with the public.

This comes at the back of Government's quest to drive down technology in every aspect of Ghanaian life--the paperless port processes, national identity card, automation of land administration processes and mobile money interoperability, among others. It is also to reduce the incidence of corruption, as some technology experts say, the antidote to corruption is technology.

The Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, made these known in an address to officially launch PaySwitch Company Limited in Accra on Wednesday.

Dr Bawumia, who was the Guest of Honour at the launch, pledged government's commitment to supporting Ghanaian companies that were ready to make inroads into the emerging technology sector, adding that in this era of rapid technological advancement, it was imperative that Government adopted the technological way of governance in order to improve on the lives of Ghanaians.

He commended PaySwitch Company Limited for augmenting Government's efforts to drive down the technology highway, leveraging on the opportunities that technology presented, in order to improve on how government institutions worked.

He noted that in many emerging economies, technological innovations had increased in reach and depth in financial inclusion, Ghana being no exception.

Financial innovations technologies, he noted, had made it possible to provide efficient, secure, low cost and convenient financial services to large segments of the population who, hitherto, were financially excluded.

Dr Bawumia said since payment systems were at the heart of day to day operations of Ghana's economy, PaySwitch online payment platform, that facilitated and exchanged payment activities, could only make an important contribution to the overall performance of the economy--creating jobs and adding value to national output.

The Vice President said the payment system was the lifeline of any modern economy and that any innovation to improve it was an improvement of the economy.

"Last week, together with the Bank of Ghana, GHIPPS and the Telecos, I launched the Mobile Money Interoperability system which is an initiative geared towards making the financial inclusion more effective and sustainable.

"With Mobile Money Interoperability - What Ghana has done, has not been done before in Africa. We are doing something that is unique, we are allowing interoperability between the mobile companies, and again, brought in the banks" where a client could send money to his/her bank account via mobile money and vice visa.

Government, since last year, embarked on an aggressive pursuit towards financial inclusion and formalization of the Ghanaian economy, through digitization - paperless port process, national ID, which is expected to be rolled out this year, issuance of smart driving licenses, e-business registration and certification, digital property addressing system and the commencement of the process to digitizing the land processing records system.

The launch of PaySwitch Company limited was, therefore, to officially introduce its brands and services to the industry players and stakeholders.

The introduction of its TELA, the new debit and pre-paid card, which is for bank and mobile money, is a local chip+pin card designed to offer banks, savings and loans, telcos and many other institutions a comprehensive payment card products and solutions.

The TELA Card, according to Kojo Choi, CEO of PaySwitch, was a fast and secure online gateway, which offered efficient and flexible connection to all global payment needs, adding that with a single integration, one can accept payments from the card to mobile money, and access a host of functionalities and alternative payment channels.

Mr Choi commended Government for the massive improvement in the management of the economy and the passion to digitize the economy, describing it as a prudent way of instituting trust in the payment system.

He urged Ghanaian entrepreneurs and companies to imbibe technology in the operations to catch up with modern trends.