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SEC adopts digitisation to strengthen surveillance

BY: Ama Amankwah Baafi
Rev. Daniel Ogbarmey Tetteh — Director General of SEC

THE Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is embarking on a digitisation programme to strengthen its surveillance role of the capital market, Director General of the commission, Rev. Daniel Ogbarmey Tetteh, has announced.

Dubbed: ‘Interim regulatory compliance portal’ (IRCP), he said it would allow market operators to submit returns online.

During the annual webinar series by the Black Star Group on July 26, 2022, dubbed, “2022 Investor Webinar Series,” Rev. Tetteh said the long-term vision was to employ the regulatory compliance portal (RCP), as happens in other markets to get into the systems of market operators to pick information at different times.

The theme for this year’s webinar was: “The Future Starts Today: Effective Recovery, Resilience and Continuity Amid Global Market shocks.”

“If we are submitting information, whether it is online or not, we can still whitewash or doctor it a bit. So, we are exploring the option of being able to get into systems and pick information,” he said.

Rev. Tetteh, who spoke on the topic, “Restoring Investor Confidence in the Ghanaian Economy – The Role of SEC”, admitted, however, that could have some implications in terms of capability and capacity of the technology put in place.

“But because we are now at the stage of digitising our operations and looking at implementing the IRCP we are looking at all the options.

“We have the interim solution now but going a step further with the main RCP or how we can get in and pick up information. We are looking at how to strengthen our surveillance of the market – both the SEC and the market operators,” he said.

Public education

He said through SEC’s programme, ‘Time with the SEC,’ the commission embarked on a roadshow to Takoradi in the Western Region last year. This year, there are plans to at least, hold it in the regional capitals to be able to engage different pockets of the investing public to let them understand more about the financial sector clean up.

“Aside from that, we are also looking at some regional offices as currently SEC is just here in Accra. We have a plan to at least set up two more. We are looking at where it will be best to set up a regional office. I am not saying that we will be in all the regional capitals but we looking at some regional offices so that we can cover the wider population,” he said.

Webinar

Speaking on the ‘Contribution of Pension Funds in Developing and Sustaining a Robust Financial System, the Chief Investment Officer of Axis Pensions Trust, Nana Wiafe Boamah, said research showed a significant impact of pension funds on capital market development, with the result driven by countries with high financial development.

He said for countries with low financial development, pension funds did not show a significant impact.

“Pension fund will not have the needed impact if the financial system is underdeveloped. If your macros are weak, pension funds will not have the needed impact on the market,” he said.

According to him, the country may not see a lot of traction in this direct investing space because of high threshold pension funds need to meet before investment is done.

Mr Boamah said broker dealers needed to be more aggressive in pitching stocks while trustees and fund managers execute to the letter, the new investment guideline.

“The Ghana Stock Exchange and Regulators should introduce policies to improve the market breadth, depth and liquidity on the exchange,” he said.