Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta has indicated that government is focused on merging the Agricultural Development Bank (adb) and the National Investment Bank (NIB).
The Finance Minister announced in the 2018 budget presentation last year that government was considering merging adb and NIB banks to serve industry and the agriculture sectors.
Reports on the merger have been low, as some analysts warned the move could lead to job losses.
But speaking at a forum organized by the Danquah Institute in collaboration with Citi Fm on the collapse of banks, Mr. Ofori-Atta stressed that government was still pursuing the agenda to merge the two banks.
He explained that a merger of the two banks would create a smooth atmosphere for government to implement its flagship programme, ‘Planting for Food and Jobs.’
“We are looking at NIB and adb coming together. I think we are still on that course to do that because at the core of that, we will then be creating that capacity to look at this whole industrialization in an organized and structured way of a strong institution that does that so that agric and industrialization would be taken care of.”
Government has already indicated that the ‘Planting for Food and Jobs’ programme will create thousands of jobs and provide food to feed the nation.
According to Mr. Ofori-Atta, such a huge project would require financial support that can be provided by the adb and NIB when they are consolidated.
Other distinguished persons, who took part in the forum, were a Deputy Minister of Finance, Charles Adu-Boahen, head of chambers, Kasser Law Firm and lecturer at GIMPA, Clara Kasser-Tee, private legal practitioner Ace Ankomah, senior lecturer and economist, Dr Eric Osei-Assibey, head consultant and CEO of EBEN Consultancy, Accra, Dr Ebenezer Ashley.
The forum was on the theme, “The Banking Sector Clean Up – Are Depositors Safe?”Some seven struggling local banks collapsed after they breached various regulations, forcing the Central Bank to merge five of them into an entity called Consolidated Bank Ghana.