Mr Roterice Ayeh, Credit Risk Manager at the ARB Apex Bank has stressed the need for Microfinance institutions to take advantage of digital revolution to provide quality customer services to their clients.
"Microfinance institutions will only thrive if they take advantage of the digital revolution to build the capacity of staff, improve operational inefficiencies and effectively reach out to potential customers regardless of their location" he said
Mr Ayeh was speaking at the opening of University of Cape Coast’s (UCC) 10th Microfinance Conference on Thursday, on the theme "Microfinance and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)".
The two-day conference is expected to provide the platform for participants to interrogate the happenings in the financial sector with the view to improving performance of Microfinance institutions for the realisation of the microfinance promise.
Mr Ayeh pointed out that dedicated microfinance services had the potential to contribute enormously towards achieving the SDGs particularly goal one, two, five and nine which sought to reduce poverty, hunger and gender inequalities, step up innovation and bridge infrastructure development deficit.
In pursuance of this, he said the Apex Bank had provided financial and technical support for rural and community banks to make them vibrant and resourceful in providing the needed financial services to clients.
It has equally facilitated the adoption of technology to enhance the operations of banks to improve outreach at a sustainable rate to ensure the growth and survival of all rural banks.
That notwithstanding, he stressed the need for the industry to collaborate with the right academic institutions to deploy ultra-modern financial technologies to be able to achieve the required outcomes.
Mr Ayeh commended UCC for the strong bond with industry and for contributing to address the challenges against the progress of the sector, particularly recent happenings that affected the trust of the masses.
Professor Ghartey Ampiah, Vice Chancellor of UCC, reiterated calls on microfinance institutions to adopt pragmatic and innovative approaches to increase their customer base to reduce poverty, saying, would culminate in a significant financial investment and social re-configuration and better outcomes to propel the needed growth in the sector.
He said though the 17 SDGs were ambitious, it would take efforts by all to achieve them and appealed to organisations to redirect their attention and increase resource allocation purposefully towards the achievement of the SDGs.