Deputy Minister of Finance, Dr. John Ampontuah Kumah
Deputy Minister of Finance, Dr. John Ampontuah Kumah has hinted that the Akufo-Addo-led government in collaboration with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC Ghana) and other financial sector regulators has taken steps to continuously strengthen the domestic capital market to create the needed environment that will support the integration agenda of the sub-region.
According to the Deputy Minister, the innovative financing and a strong capital market in West Africa is key to raising patient capital for economic growth and prosperity of the African Continent.
He explained that the move by the government is to develop the ongoing implementation of a 10-year Capital Market Master Plan (CMMP) to shape the future of the capital market industry in Ghana and to aid the economic development agenda of the Government.
Dr. Kumah made this known when speaking at the West Africa Capital Market Conference held in Accra organized by the Securities and Exchange Commission in collaboration with the West Africa Securities Regulators Association.
The conference themed “Deepening and strengthening the Capital Market access across West Africa through effective regulation” sought to discuss economic integration through the capital market in West Africa, and innovative solutions to reduce the gap between the Capital market and the financial needs of the economy.
The program which attracted the capital market operators and the investor community from the Sub-region and across the world was opened by the Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia.
Addressing the business forum, Dr. Kumah who the MP for Ejisu, noted that the established – Ghana Commodity Exchange connects markets, connects people, and provides opportunities by using the most modern, interactive, and appropriate technology that meets the needs of markets and stakeholders.
He explained that the cleanup of the Banking and the Asset Management Industries as a result of which the financial sector has been streamlined with fewer but stronger market operators and rescued the deposit and investment of over 4.6 million depositors and 100,000 investors respectively.
‘’The positioning of Ghana as a Financial Hub to attract international/regional finance and certainly, the capital market will play a key role, abolishing of Value Added Tax (VAT) on management fees on PEs, VCs, and Mutual Funds to encourage institutional and angel investors, both local and foreign, to invest such critical funds for private sector growth and create jobs among others’’.
He noted that through these initiatives, “we hope to drive the capital market to the level where international collaborations will not create any sense of cannibalism on our local market but will rather serve as the bridge for growth and improvement’’.
‘’At the end of 2020 when COVID was biting hard, the stock market recorded one of its most successful years with volume trades of 695 million shares (the 2nd highest in the Exchange’s 30-year history), whilst the value traded of GH¢ 575 million was the 3rd highest. Total market capitalization at the end of 2020 was GH¢ 54,374.88 million, down 4.25 percent on the previous year’s close,’’ he noted.
He stated further that this is a reflection of the resilience of the markets in trying times, adding that the moment of awakening is dawning on the government to give more attention to the building of an ecosystem of financial intelligence that will increase participation in the capital market and also to see the liquidation of the market and promote mass participation for greater wealth generation.
The Deputy Minister noted that ‘’we must make our region a hub of capital market activities through collaborative efforts and regulatory reforms. We must all be excited about the prospect of the industry. The various reforms and actions of governments across the region should be geared toward creating a lasting impact on West African economies’’.
However, he urges all the participants to continually show oneness in building Africa they aspire to see, by tasking them to put in place the financial infrastructure needed to efficiently absorb foreign capital, and undertake speedy policy and structural reform to attract private flows that we need.
-BY Daniel Bampoe