About 22 banks and four fintech companies as well as a savings and loans company are now offering the GhIPSS Instant Pay (GIP) service to the public. The GIP is an electronic payment system that enables bank customers to transfer funds from one account to another of a different bank in a matter of seconds.
The payment is the fastest interbank payment system and also offers the public one of the fastest ways to send or transfer money within the country. The Chief Executive of GhIPSS Archie Hesse explained that besides the use of GIP for interbank transfers, banks and Fintech companies could use it to develop several other value-added services.
“A lot of online transactions are taking place in Ghana, some with online payments others without. Fintech companies can enter that space and use GIP to provide real time payment solutions,” Mr Hesse said.
He said GhIPSS would continue to engage with stakeholders to drive patronage for GIP. The introduction of GIP started slowly with just a handful of banks offering the service. But due to its numerous advantages, all the key banks in addition to firms providing electronic financial services are on board offering it.
GIP and mobile money have been tipped as the two electronic payment platforms that can rapidly deepen financial inclusion in the country and also reduce the use of cash. Countries such as Nigeria are witnessing a significant drop in the use of cash because of similar payment options and it is anticipated that Ghana will experience a similar trend.
Currently, the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems ltd (GhIPSS), is working jointly with the banks to educate the public and encourage them to use the GIP service. Four Fintech companies, Etranzact, Expresspay, ATL Pay and MoneyLine UK are providing the GIP service as third party processors.
The only savings and loans company providing the service is First Allied Savings and Loans company. All the country’s major banks including Standard Chartered Bank, GCB Bank, Barclays Bank, Ecobank, Agriculture Development Bank, Universal Merchant Bank and HFC bank are offering the service.
The rest are Zenith Bank, Stanbic Bank, National Investment Bank, Cal bank, Energy Bank, Royal Bank, Guaranty Trust Bank, and First National Bank. Other banks such as Capital Bank, Prudential Bank, United Bank of Africa, Access Bank and Heritage Bank are also offering GIP.
Early entrants, Sovereign Bank and Premium Bank are also in the league of financial institutions offering it. According to Mr Hesse the rest of the banks are at various stages of preparedness to also start offering the service. Mr Hesse said GIP was extremely convenient and encouraged the banking public to ask for the service from their banks.