SEC and FSD Africa partner to strengthen capital markets

The Securities and Exchange Commission, Ghana (SEC) has become the second capital market regulator to formalize its participation in Financial Sector Deepening Africa’s (FSD Africa) flagship Africa Regulator Support Programme – a continent-wide initiative designed to strengthen the continent’s capital market regulators to reach international standards.

The cooperation agreement was signed at the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences during the 3rd Capital Market Conference on the 21st of November. The conference also celebrated the 20th anniversary of the SEC’s establishment.

The signing was undertaken by Daniel Ogbarmey Tetteh – Director General SEC Ghana, and Evans Osano – Director of Financial Markets, FSD Africa; and observed by the Minister of Finance, Mr. Ken Ofori-Atta, and Philip Smith – Country Director for the UK’s Department for International Development (DfID) in Ghana.

Ghana was chosen to be part of this programme because of its unique position: strong interest from international investors toward the country’s development, and active support from the government of Ghana to drive capital markets development to raise long-term finance and support sustainable economic growth.

Through the programme, FSD Africa will provide holistic support to SEC Ghana. First, it will fund an institutional capacity assessment to identify strengths and areas of improvement in SEC Ghana’s strategy and operations, providing support to implement key recommendations. The programme will also conduct a scoping study for the non-government bond market, and help to develop the country’s private debt market for cedi corporate bonds.

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The two-and-a-half-year Africa Regulator Support Programme will provide funding to build the capacity of capital market regulators across the continent; provide world-class technical assistance; encourage closer collaboration among regulators; and conduct research to support the development of new policies and regulations.

As a participant in the pan-African programme, SEC Ghana will also be supported to collaborate and share knowledge with capital market regulators across the continent.

Mr. Smith said: “We welcome this new partnership between FSD Africa and the Securities and Exchange Commission, which will help SEC Ghana to make use of international expertise. The development of capital markets is critical for enabling access to sustainable financing for infrastructure and private sector investment. FSD Africa is funded by the UK government, and this is an exciting new element to the UK’s offer in Ghana that will be critical in helping Ghana to move ‘Beyond Aid’ and deliver the Sustainable Development Goals”.

Mr. Ogbarmey Tetteh commented:We look forward to a strong, mutually beneficial partnership with FSD Africa as we commence this project. FSD Africa has been keen to support Ghana’s capital market development, with its resultant impact on the real economy. As the Commission deepens its capacity, the need for technical support and insights is very much appreciated. Another important exercise that will come out of this partnership is a bond market study. This will enhance the work being done on the Capital Markets Master Plan Working Group”.

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Mark Napier, Director, FSD Africa commented: “Ghana was chosen to be part of FSD Africa’s Regulator Support Programme because of its government’s strong commitment to driving capital markets development. FSD Africa is excited to work with key stakeholders in Ghana, including the Securities and Exchange Commission, to develop financial markets in support of inclusive economic growth”.

SEC Nigeria became the first capital market regulator to join the programme in September. FSD Africa will implement the programme in a further seven key markets: including Kenya, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

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