Amenfiman Rural Bank has announced plans to give out micro-loans to people who lost money when some seven banks folded up.
The initiative is targeted at businesses and individuals, the rural bank has said.
The special package in the bank’s micro market is meant to reestablish what has become a growing decline in confidence in the banking sector.
Chief Executive of Amenfiman Rural Bank, Dr Alexander Asmah, explains the initiative will not be restricted to persons that only save with the bank.
“We are going to give them some money to restart their businesses even when they don’t have savings with us,” he said.
According to him, the initiative is very important to reassure the customers that the financial system is still working and can support them to do their businesses.
“We are sure they will be advocates and tell other people how banks they do not have savings with are able to help them get back on their feet.
“The assurance is that there are still competent hands that can handle issues and the financial system must be trusted for the economy to run,” he said.
Dr Asmah said without initiatives like these, the banking sector will crush.
He said these during the opening of the Suame Branch of the Amenfiman Rural Bank. It becomes the third branch in Ashanti Region.
The new initiative is also expected to win some loyal customers to the new branch.
The branch is targeted at artisans and businesses in the Suame magazine enclave.
Past Challenges Suame Magazine Artisans
The continuous collapse of financial institutions in the country has resulted in a decline of confidence in the sector and fear among depositors.
The hardest hit persons are artisans and traders and other workers in the informal sector.
Chairman of the Association of Garages, Osei Bonsu, is perturbed by the trend.
“Suame Magazine is a place where most people have lost their capital and deposits to different financial institutions that had come here to do business,” he said.
The rural banks are currently the only tier in the financial sector that have not experienced any of the crisis.
“We will ask our association members and other traders here to do business with them, at least these packages will bring us back to business. Rural Banks are different from those that collapsed”, he added.
New approach to new market
Board Chairman of the Bank, Dr Tony Aubynn, says the bank has carefully studied the market to successfully do business with the artisans.
“Over here, people are extremely busy and do not have much time to be queuing up in the bank and so we have carved a strategy to be able to serve them,” he said.
“They are business people and they require specific attention that addresses their specific business needs.
“According to them, there is high confidence in our services and our bank because customers on-boarded from the beginning have more or less have become an advocate for the bank. We are getting more referrals than our salespeople making contacts directly with our customers,” he added.
All through, rural banks have remained the only sphere in the financial sector that has remained resolute during the chaos in the industry.
Dr. Aubynn, continues that, “we have seen in recent times that some banks have had to merge whiles some have had to lose their licenses. Our confidence as Amenfiman Rural Bank stems from the fact that we are a solid bank with a solid capital base”.
Amenfiman Rural Bank is the first rural bank that met the bank of Ghana’s Minimum Capital Requirement of one million Ghana cedis and currently stands more than double of it.
It is the only bank that has branches across three regions; Ashanti, Central and Western regions due to its strong capital base.