Ecobank Ghana is set to meet the new minimum capital requirement by June this year. This comes at a time when a number of banks are racing to meet the minimum capital requirement of GH¢400 million by December 2018, from the GH¢120 million set by the Bank of Ghana.
Speaking to journalists after its Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Accra, Managing Director Daniel Sackey, said the shareholders had given the bank the approval to increase its current stated capital of over GH¢226 million through a capitalization of their income surplus. This will see an additional GH¢190 million being added to the bank’s stated capital.
He also said that “the bank will maintain a well-diversified portfolio to prevent exposure to few sectors and associated concentration risk”. Apart from better asset allocation the bank also remains strong on loan monitoring and collections and envisage that the shift in capital requirement will only contribute to a stronger balance sheet and an enhancement to our already measured leverage policy” he added.
Mergers and Acquisitions
On speculations of a possible merger with or acquire another bank, Mr Sackey also disclosed that the bank is not seeking out any mergers or acquisitions at the moment.
It would be recalled that in 2012, ECOBANK Ghana merged with a local bank, The Trust Bank (TTB) which saw it consolidate its position as one of the largest banks in the country.
On concerns with customer service, Mr Sackey disclosed that the bank has not lost sight of the individual customer and has not in any way prioritized customers such as large corporations over individual customers.
He mentioned the bank’s mobile app, ECOBANK MOBILE as one of the simple and convenient ways to do banking and bring banking services to the doorsteps of individuals rather than troop to banking halls to undertake transactions.
The app can be downloaded from the App store or Play store. The Ecobank app was launched in November 2016. The app has attracted over 4 million onboarding across Africa and in Ghana alone, a total number of onboard on the app stands at 895,000.
The use of traditional media and social media is also used by the bank to push its digital agenda.
Basel 2 Implementation
The Managing Director also disclosed that the implementation of Basel 2 principles under the Basel Accords will see the bank set aside capital against credit risk assets, market risk and operational risk.
This will also see an increase in capital adequacy ratio from 10% to 13% and for systematically important banks; the required ratio will be 15%.
Mr Sackey, however, added that “it would continue its strategy of maintaining a well-diversified portfolio to prevent exposure to few sectors and associated high concentration risk to mitigate any potential effects.
The Basel 2 is a set of banking principles that guide the smooth operation of the banking industry globally so that they have enough capital on account to meet obligations and absorb unexpected losses.