Use capital market to address infrastructural deficit

BY: Seth J. Bokpe
Ghana Stock Exchange

Ghana’s energy crisis and the huge infrastructure gap offer the country an opportunity to take advantage of the capital market to address its infrastructural deficit, the Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), has said.

According to Mr Eric Okai, the country had for many years, failed to accelerate economic growth and development through effectively using the capital market as a strategic tool.

 

Capital market for development

“Countries, such as the United States of America and China, that have recognised the capital market as a development tool for generating long-term economic growth, have made tremendous gains.’’

These countries accelerated the pace of their economic development by reforming the financial systems and creating well-regulated capital markets to borrow cheaply from investors both at home and to mobilise capital infrastructure for development,” he said.

He was speaking at a press launch of the second Capital Market Week and Conference in Accra.

This year’s event was scheduled for November 21-28, 2015 on the theme: “The Capital Market - An answer to Ghana’s Economic Development.”

Organised in collaboration with the Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) and the Ghana Securities Industry Association (GSIA), the week has been dedicated to educating the public on investment in the regions by personnel of the commission and  market operators to create awareness and generate enough confidence in the securities market.

Programme line-up

Programmes lined up for the event  include  a health walk on November 21,  public forum on November 23, radio programmes,  conference on November 24-25 and a public lecture on West African capital markets integration, to be crowned by a dinner dance/awards night on November, 28.

The conference is expected to bring together policy makers, market practitioners, the private sector and academia to seriously rethink the development of a viable and sustainable market for Ghana.

In that regard, Mr Okai said the commission viewed the capital market as an indispensable tool for the country’s economic development and growth and was totally committed to ensuring a sound, well-regulated and developed capital market for Ghana.

The SEC is the statutory regulator for the capital market in Ghana and as part of its mandate, it is charged with the development of capital in Ghana.

Since 2007, the SEC has been using the various educational tools such as outreach programmes, mass media, capital market conference, capital market quizzes to educate the public on the workings of the capital market and how it can benefit individuals in wealth creation, as well as companies and the government in raising capital.

The Director-General of the SEC, Dr Adu Anane Antwi, said the GSE was not limited to only big businesses, but also available to small-scale enterprises to raise capital for their business.

He said the commission would soon wean itself off the state purse to enable it to operate more efficiently.