The Head of Financial Stability at the Bank of Ghana (BoG), Dr. Joseph France has called on Ghanaians to report individuals and companies that price their products and services in dollars.
According to him, whereas some companies are permitted to directly deal with foreign exchange due to they being net earners of foreign exchange like mining companies and oil and gas companies etc., most companies are not permitted to do so.
He said companies and individuals who price their products in dollars without explicit permission from the Bank of Ghana are in contravention of the Foreign Exchange Act and must be dealt with.
He has thus charged Ghanaians to report such companies to the police for the right actions to be taken.
Speaking on JoyNews’ PM Express, he said, “We flush out some of these when we get to know of them. We have limited institutions that deal in forex. For instance, when you go to the oil and gas companies, I mean, net foreign exchange earners, they’re not licensed to deal but they’re permitted to deal in forex because they’re net forex earners, like the mining companies, the oil and gas companies.
“Some limited institutions like some limited hotels and so on are permitted to deal in forex. It’s not everybody who is supposed to deal in forex for which you advertise. So when these things come to our attention, we go after such persons to make sure that they stop. So I put a challenge out there that once you get to know of somebody, we get reports and we act on them.
“So we tell the public that anybody who is pricing in dollars please report because it’s actually a crime to be pricing in dollars. The foreign exchange act makes it that. So you report to us and we’ll also report to the security agencies. Or report to the security agencies and the person will be stopped,” he said.
The pricing in dollar has been identified as one of the factors increasing the demand for the US currency and thereby leading to the fast depreciation of the cedi.
The local currency has depreciated against the dollar and other trading partners terribly since the beginning of this year, with the cedi attaining the unenviable reputation as the worst performing currency in the world apart from Sri Lanka’s Rupee, according to Bloomberg.
A recent $750 M Afreximbank loan has caused a little stabilisation in the system and the Central Bank wants to maintain it.