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IFC Workshop Outlines NPC Functions

By S. Siapha Mulbah

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) stakeholder’s engagement with the Central Bank of Liberia and other commercial banks has been climaxed with the functions of the National Payment Council outlined.

The workshop’s final day presentation yesterday witnessed the Director for Payment System at the Central Bank explaining to the participants the role played by the CBL in effectuating payment systems across the country.

Miatta Kuteh said the banker’s bank CBL is working for all financial institutions, and also hoping that commercial banks make use of the National Payment Council.

“It is equally binding on Central Bank to have the Payment Council so we had the national payment system forum in 2018; that is where the NPC was bred and the council chapter was developed,” she explained. 

According to her, the National Payment Council is supposed to provide guidance to the reform process working on infrastructural balances between banking entities in regard to settling direct credit, debits and others.

“The NPC is going to be responsible for making policy decisions or recommendations pertaining to all matters when it comes to the national payment system,” Madam Kuteh added.

The payment expert maintained that the council will also serve as a forum to secure commitment of bodies concerned to push the agenda of interparty operation between financial institutions, stating, “We are all in to this process together and we need the effort of all banking and even non-banking institutions to have it getting an expected result.”

Speaking on the mandate of the council, Madam Kuteh revealed that the Council is going to provide strategic document that will articulate the framework for the implementation of the national payment system in Liberia.

“If you look at our financial inclusion strategy, there are three critical pillars and one is on digital financial services pillar that promotes total financial inclusion,” she intimated.

In a special remark, the resident representative of the International Finance Corporation (IFC) Alexandra Celestin said the IFC workshop organized by the IFC and the CBL are part of the many capacity building projects aimed at improving financial practices.

According to Celestin; the discussion around the national payment system is a healthier one for Liberia and the banking institutions need to make use of the payment council.

The participants then lauded the IFC and the CBL for the workshop and recommended basic institutional interest so as to ensure that the National Payment Council does not become a failed reality at the point in time that many banks will start to follow its programs.

The head for consumers banking at the Ecobank Gibson Kollie intimated among several issues that there council and others concerned with policy reforms work on inter-operational[H1]  so as to break the number of inconveniences faced by consumers caused by restriction on networks.

Kollie and other participants said, “It is important to have people transacting with whatever institution once he or she can afford the charges attached instead of Ecobank’s customers transacting with only others that are linked to Ecobank.”

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