Pressure is mounting on the Central Bank and the government to disclose the sponsors behind the GH¢2 billion support to some five banks under the Ghana Amalgamated Trust.
GAT, according to the Central Bank, is an arrangement of private pension funds to inject GH¢2 billion into supporting solvent and well-run indigenous banks, which were otherwise having difficulties meeting the new minimum capital requirement of GH¢400 million.
The banks are the merged Omni/Sahel Sahara Bank, Universal Merchant Bank, Prudential Bank, ADB and NIB.
Following the announcement of the package on January 4, 2018, the Central Bank came under heavy accusation for eliminating some local banks from benefiting under the scheme—an accusation Dr Ernest Addison, governor of the Central Bank dismissed as untenable, arguing his outfit had nothing to do with the selection of the five banks.
Disclosing faces behind GAT will boost confidence
Speaking on the Business Edition Wednesday, Banking Consultant Dr Richmond Atuahene contends that revealing the identity of the sponsors would boost investor confidence in the bond to be issued to raise the GH¢2 billion.
“If you want me to issue a bond who is backing it? Can this institution, the GAT worth their salt go into the market and say that we are issuing this so back us? Whatever way you look at it there are a few physical issues.
“If I was going to buy that bond, I would ask who the sponsors are. You tell me GAT, then who set the GAT up? What’s the ownership, the ownership identity? If there’s no ownership identity it would be very difficult for me to participate in it because at the end of it all should something go wrong it means I won’t have a fallback position,” he said.
On his part, the Director of Operations at Dalex Finance Joe Jackson observed that the Ghana Amalgamated Trust may not be the ideal solution for addressing the challenges of the five banks.
“I have tremendous problems with GAT,” he said asking rhetorically if Ghana was “facing tremendous liquidity crisis at the moment?”