Guyanese are one step closer to accessing a modernised electrical payment system; a move that will see Guyana saving three percent of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and reduce instances of corruption.
Bank of Guyana (BoG) Governor, Dr. Gobind Ganga made this known last Friday during a press conference at the Ministry of Finance. There, Dr. Ganga said that the National Payment System that existed before was backward.
The new system, he said, provides for international best practices for payment systems and will ensure that the economy would be on a “better footing” for more efficient mechanisms of transactions.Dr. Ganga said while there were payment systems that were under the BoG, there was no power to ensure electronic payments and digital signature.
The Central Bank Governor said, “The New Payment System Act recognises all of that and makes them legal.” He noted that there are two aspects of the modernised payment system. One is to ensure that there is adequate legislation, and the other, to ensure there is the infrastructure to enable electronic payments.
“For example, we will have much more use of transaction, bank to bank transactions rather than the utilisation of cheques. Cash payments will also be reduced significantly.”
Dr. Ganga added that the bank is now providing the necessary physical infrastructure to allow for electronic payments that will ensure that there is much efficiency. “That will enhance transparency, good governance and reduce corrupt practices.”
The BoG Governor is optimistic that within two years, the system could be up and running and “everyone will start to benefit.”
A 2015 payment cost study conducted by the World Bank’s Payment Systems Development Group (PSDG), shows that based on all indicators, once successfully implemented, the programme can lead to significant benefits in several areas.