Ernest Addison: Launch of Absa Bank Ghana Limited

Speech by Dr Ernest Addison, Governor of the Bank of Ghana, at the launch of Absa Bank Ghana Limited, Accra, 10 February 2020.

The views expressed in this speech are those of the speaker and not the view of the BIS.

Central bank speech  | 
12 February 2020


1. Today marks a significant change in the history of the banking sector as Barclays Bank Ghana Limited, which opened its doors to banking in Ghana some 100 years ago transitions to Absa Bank Ghana Limited. Before going any further, let me extend a special welcome to Mr. Aaron Daniel Mminele, CEO of Absa Group to Ghana, and for gracing this occasion. At this stage, permit me to take you down memory lane as we follow the tracks of this over a century journey which has led us to this important launch. You will realize that the journey of Barclays and now Absa is intertwined with the history of Ghana-making it a cornerstone of the banking industry.

2. In 1917, the Colonial Bank, which was founded by a Royal Charter in 1836 to trade in the West Indies, was acquired by Barclays as the nucleus for its colonial network - Barclays (Dominion, Colonial and Overseas), and started operations in Lagos, Nigeria. Subsequently, the then new Barclays DCO acquired branches of the National Bank of South Africa and one other bank (the Anglo Egyptian Bank in Lagos) to widen its international operations. By the end of 1926, Barclays had established nine branches in West Africa, including Barclays Bank of Ghana.