Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems Limited (GhIPSS) has partnered with Verve International, a leading payments technology and card brand in Africa, to launch the acceptance of Verve Cards in Ghana. Launching the partnership in Accra last Friday, the head of payment systems at the Bank of Ghana (BoG), Dr Settor Amediku, said improving electronic payment in the sub region was very necessary and important because it made transactions as simply and affordable as possible. He was of the view that to enhance financial inclusion, there was the need for African leaders to support and promote the creation of strong payment institutions across the continent. According to him, GhIPSS’ collaboration with Verve would go a long way to create an enabling environment for retail payment to thrive between Ghana and Nigeria. Dr Amediku, however, called for the implementation of a card bank policy that would not hold customers funds for longer periods to enhance the confidence of card bank holders, adding that high transaction and payment charges also discouraged card usage. "Affordable transaction fees has the potential of scaling up adoption and usage. As the host country for the Africa Free Trade, we are very excited about this partnership and its potential. This is another milestone worth celebrating, as we strive to grow the network on every part of the continent," he added. He commended Verve and GhIPPS for the collaboration and urged them to keep enhancing intra-Africa crossborder payment, in furtherance with the Africa Free Trade agenda. In his remarks, Mr Mike Ogbalu III, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Verve International, stated that Verve and GhIPSS shared similar vision to grow digital payments in Africa. He said, "We are excited about this occasion. It marks the beginning of a great synergy between two organisations with similar aspirations to drive the growth of digital payments across Africa. Because we typically share the same payment and economic challenges in various African countries, it is also logical that the solution should be via African collaboration." Growing digital payments, intra-Africa trade and ultimately driving economic prosperity, he said, were the priorities of his outfit. On his part, the CEO of GhIPSS, Mr Archie Hesse, explained that the partnership was a welcome development as it had the capacity to boost the Ghanaian digital payment system, highlighting that the development of the digital payment system in Africa was critical to Africa's competitiveness in the world. He said, "We are positive this collaboration will open a new vista of opportunities for improved services and development of more home-grown solutions. The card portfolio within our banks will increase and Ghanaian cardholders will have more exciting world class services and benefits to enjoy." He also assured that the partnership would accelerate trade, cooperation, commerce, cultural exchange and also reduce poverty.