Banks not discontinuing foreign currency accounts – GAB assures

The Ghana Association of Banks (GAB) has dismissed claims that commercial banks in the country have begun processes to close the personal foreign currency savings accounts of customers by July 31.

The Association explains that some banks are implementing measures to address the situation where customers save foreign currencies in their savings accounts as a store of value, leading to speculation and deepening the cedi’s woes.

This follows information Citi Business News gathered last week that some of the banks are asking clients with such accounts to hold their foreign currencies in e-wallets or current accounts.

In an interview with Citi Business News, Chief Executive of the Ghana Association of Banks (GAB), John Awuah, explained that, “no bank has taken any decision to discontinue deposits in foreign currencies. Rather, one bank has reviewed its products offerings and decided that they are not going to henceforth be operating using accounts in foreign currencies.

For many, they believe the initiative was a tactic by banks to impose fees and diminish customers’ forex gain as the cedi continues to fall in value.

But in clarifying the situation, Mr. Awuah explained that the bank, “observed a trend where customers hoard foreign currencies in their foreign currency savings accounts. A practice which is feeding into speculation and leading to the depreciation of the Cedi and we do not want to be part of this,” he said.

Mr. Awuah, however, noted that businesses that transact in foreign currencies can still use the foreign currency current account or other accounts such as the Foreign Exchange Account.

Source: Citi Newsroom

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