There are several reasons many Ghanaians read meanings into the introduction of new currencies into the country’s economy, especially at a point where cashless economy or cashless society is being championed.
While many believe printing new currency notes is going to push inflation to up, others are of the view that introducing new notes is going to keep a lot of notes in the system which will not help the cashless economy being championed.
Yet, others believe that it will also help the government in power and for that matter the New Patriotic Party (NPP) to grab a lot of cash for themselves, especially when the country is approaching a major election year.
According to the Bank of Ghana (BoG), the regulator of the banking sector, however, before they will introduce the new currency notes, they had conducted good research to ascertain whether there is a need for the introduction of the new notes.
Per their assessment two years ago, before the introduction of the 100ghc, 200ghc and 2ghc coin, it was revealed that about 70% of Ghanaians still use currency notes to transact businesses in the country.
According to the Bank of Ghana, all over the world, countries bring on board higher denomination to facilitate businesses.
The Director of Research at the Central Bank, Philip Abradu-Otoo, told a group of journalists that the BoG did consult the public before introducing the GHC100, GHc200 and GHC2 coin.
‘We consulted business owners, market women, traders, among other relevant groups as well,” he stated.
At a workshop organized by the Institute of Financial and Economic Journalists (IFEJ) on achieving sustainable and balanced growth in the banking sector at Koforidua in the Eastern Region, Abradu-Otoo noted that the idea is not to have people carrying huge currency notes in a bag.
Early on during the introduction of the new notes, the Governor of the Central Bank, Dr. Ernest Addison, said the face value of the cedi compared to the US dollar over the past 12 years had eroded due to sustained periods of high inflation and depreciation.
He believes that the new currencies will help shore up the value of the currency.
Currently, Ghana has currency notes of ghc1, ghc2, ghc5, ghc10, ghc20, ghc50 and the recently introduced GHC100 and GHc200 notes. The coins are 1pesewa, 5 pesewas, 10 pesewas, 20 pesewas, 1ghc and now the introduction of 2ghc coin.
Source: Fred Yaw Sarpong