The Business Community is pushing for an immediate introduction of the Chinese Yuan as a major trading currency in Ghana to reduce pressures on the Foreign Exchange (FX) market.
This, according to business owners especially importers, will reduce the pressure on the dollar which accounts for the free fall of the cedi.
China is Ghana’s second largest trading partner after Europe.
Several items manufactured in China including textiles, machinery, vegetable oil, plastics, and chemical products are imported into Ghana from China every year.
Statistics from the Trade Ministry has shown that annual imports from China is over 2 billion dollars.
With these imports, the importers have to change millions of cedis into dollars to enable them pay their manufacturers and suppliers in China, increasing the demand for the dollar.
A trend Financial Analysts say accounts for the consistent depreciation of the cedi.
“Whatever steps that can be taken so that we don’t have to depend on the dollar so much has to be taken. I don’t see why we should be wasting that much time if there is a possibility in using it. Executive Member of the Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA) Benjamin Yeboah told Citi Business News.
He urged the government to initiate discussions with the Chinese government in that regard.
Meanwhile, the Importers and Exporters Association also says the Bank of Ghana should make the Chinese Yuan more accessible.
“It is important if the Ghanaian government allows the Yuan to be used by people who go to the Chinese market to buy,” President of the Association, Samson Asaki Awingobit noted.
On his part, Economist at the University of Ghana, Dr. Ebo Turkson believes that is not the only measure to address the situation.
“The Bank of Ghana can make sure that their counterparts in China can make free transfer of resources so the traders can easily transfer funds without having to change the money into dollars physically in Ghana before sending it.”
He added that it will not be the best decision for the Central Bank to go and change millions of cedis into Yuan and make it accessible on the Ghanaian Market.