Akufo-Addo, representative of President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, spoke at the launch of PAPSS in Accra, Ghana, monitored virtually by the Nigerian Agency .
According to him, the innovative platform will save Africa more than five billion dollars annually in payment transaction costs, while supporting the operationalization of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).
He also commended the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) and the AfCFTA Secretariat for establishing the payment system.
The Ghanaian president also praised the bank for citing the PAPSS as a major step in freeing the continent from over-reliance on external players and factors for a long-awaited acceleration in intra-continental trade and investment.
“This inauguration is the result of many months of hard work, determination and commitment to achieve the objectives set for the commercial growth of the continent.
“All central banks in Africa must now come together and ensure seamless transfer of funds by implementing this most practical and important African solution to an African problem,” he said.
He also praised the pan-African significance of Ghana hosting the event as an indication of the hard-won struggle for economic self-determination following the continent’s political decolonization more than 60 years ago.
reports that PAPSS, developed by Afreximbank, is expected to boost intra-African trade by facilitating the payment, clearing and settlement of cross-border trade across Africa.
Prof. Benedict Oramah, President and Chairman of the Board of Afreximbank, said: “We look forward to building on the AfCFTA’s creation of a single market across Africa.
“PAPSS provides the state-of-the-art official market infrastructure that connects African markets with each other, enabling instant cross-border payments in respective local African currencies for cross-border trade.
“Afreximbank, as the main settlement agent of the PAPSS, provides settlement guarantees in the payment system and overdraft services to all settlement agents, in collaboration with participating central banks in Africa.
“PAPSS will effectively remove Africa’s official borders, formalize and integrate Africa’s payment systems, and play a major role in facilitating and accelerating the huge AfCFTA-induced growth curve in intra-African trade.”
According to the head of Afreximbank, PAPSS provides the solution to the disconnected and fragmented nature of payment and settlement systems that have long impeded intra-African trade.
“Before PAPSS, more than 80 percent of African cross-border payment transactions originating from African banks had to be routed abroad for clearing and settlement through international banking relationships.
“That posed multiple challenges, ranging from payment delays to operational inefficiencies to compliance concerns for disparate regional payment systems.”
In his presentation, PAPSS Executive Director, Mr. Mike Ogbalu, emphasized that the payment system was not designed to compete with or replace existing payment systems.
He said it would facilitate the level of connectivity that brings all payment systems together in one interoperable, efficient and affordable network.
“PAPSS is designed to make our currencies recover value to tame payments within Africa on this journey to African prosperity.
“This is done while providing the superhighway that connects others to reach all parts of this continent as we seek to create the Africa we want.”
The Secretary General of the AfCFTA, HE Wamkele Mene, thanked the role and commitment of the Heads of State and Government of the continent through the African Union.
reports that the inauguration of PAPSS was witnessed by former President of Nigeria and Chairman of the Intra-African Area of Trade (IAFTA) Advisory Council, Olusegun Obasanjo, and HE Mahamadou Issoufou, former President of the Republic of Niger.
Also present were Mr. Godwin Emefiele, Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria and President of the Governing Council of the PAPSS, the representatives of the Presidents of Egypt and Uganda (and the Democratic Republic of Congo representing the President of the AUC.
PAPSS has been successfully tested in all six West African Monetary Zone countries and promises to bring multiple benefits and efficiencies to intra-African trade payments.
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