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The Ghana Commercial Bank held their Annual General Meeting with the stakeholders at Accra International conference centre to enhance the structures of the Bank.

Mr. Jude Kofi Arthur who is the chairman of Ghana Commercial Bank emphasized that, this year the banking market, of which we are a key participate, was faced with a major challenge which has had a significant impact on the financial of your bank.

Bank of Ghana (BoG), pursuant to its mandate revoked the licenses of UT Bank Limited and Capital Bank Limited, and to ensure that there was no disruption to the Banking sector sought to create an alternative platform for the customers of these banks, to enable them experience a seamless transition of their business from one bank to the other".

 Accordingly, the( BoG) invited other Banks to bid for the purchase and Assumption of these two banks. The construct was that the nominated bank would assume the deposit liabilities and select the assets it chose to assume. The net gap would then be funded through the issuance of an appropriate financial instrument,he said".


Mr. Jude Kofi Arthur clearly said, as reported by the World Bank, Ghana's economic performance improved significantly in 2017 after a difficult 2016. The fiscal deficit dropped to 6.0 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2017 from 9.3 percent in 2016, underpinned by serious fiscal consolidation efforts. Despite that, total revenue (including grants) under-performed by 1.1 percent GDP, the fiscal turnaround was achieved primary through expenditure cuts 1.3 of GDP),  which were imposed on recurrent and capital expenditures. The government also capped transfer to earmarked fund at 25 percent of tax revenues".

The primary balance improved from a deficit in 2016 to a surplus of 0.8 percent of GDP in 2017 . The debt to GDP ratio is estimated at 69.2 percent in December 2017 down from 73.4 percent in 2016 reflecting a slowdown in the rate of external debt accumulation, as well as higher GDP growth. Domestic revenue mobilization is a key priority for the government ".

The Board in line with policy and guided by the need to provide both liquidity and value appreciation to shareholders has recommended a dividend of Ten (10) pesewas per share. This is afar cry from the dividend trend of previous years but you will no doubt agree that the challenges of the year and the need to increase our state capital underpin the decision. It may be worth noting that notwithstanding the challenges, we are the only listed bank on the Ghana Stock Exchange to pay Dividends to shareholders for 2017".

Mr. Jude Kofi Arthur concluded that, "our focus in the coming years is to deal with our weaknesses and enhance our strengths so we can be the number one bank in Ghana, once again. It is our view that to be able to do this we should take a strategic view to assess the threat and opportunities in our landscape. Today we all agree that digitization is key for the banks that seek to lead the industry".

Source | | Kofi Dwumah

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