Mr Archie Hesse, the Chief Executive of Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems Ltd (GhIPSS), has urged Ghanaians to adopt electronic payment as a life style to enable the country to derive maximum benefits from the existing infrastructure.
He said both service providers and consumers must lean toward electronic payment in offering services and consuming them. GhIPSS, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Bank of Ghana, has been in existence for a decade and has together with financial institutions rolled out a number of electronic payment channels.
The telecommunication companies (telcos) have also rolled out electronic payment channels working with financial institutions and Fintech companies. These two broad platforms will eventually be linked in a total interoperability project being championed by the Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia Speaking in an interview, Mr Hesse said the complete interoperability of the financial system should make payment seamless and convenient from varied electronic channels.
However, he said, this leap in the country’s payment system must be accompanied with a shift from cash to an electronic payment lifestyle.
He said the acceptance of cards, mobile money and other electronic forms of payment such as Instant Pay, Direct Credit and Debit should become the norm.
Mr Hesse said utility companies, government agencies and private businesses should offer electronic payment channels such as mobile money, point of sales devices and the likes and even offer incentives to customers who use them.
He explained that because the use of these channels saved the companies money, they could take part of the savings and offer them as the incentives to the customers.
He explained that such motivations and a general policy direction from government should help migrate Ghana into an electronic payment society.
Mr Hesse suggested that government agencies should allow the public to pay taxes, levies and fees through electronic payment channels because it would bring convenience to the paying public while it will result in efficiency in revenue mobilisation.
He said GhIPSS together with the banks and telcos would continue to educate public and promote the various channels, adding that GhIPSS would also engage service providers and encourage them to eventually make electronic payment the regular mode of payment.