Trading in dollars, others: banks, forex bureaus are only licensed institutions to do so – BoG

The Bank of Ghana has reiterated that universal banks and foreign exchange bureaux, are the only institutions licenced to trade in foreign currencies in Ghana.

This move is expected to bolster the stability of the cedi.

In its financial literacy on foreign exchange bureaux, the Central Bank said the “Black Market” foreign exchange operator does not have a valid license from the Bank of Ghana for that purpose.

It therefore warned that engaging in the business of buying and selling foreign currency without a licence from Bank of Ghana is punishable upon summary conviction, by a fine of up to 700 penalty units or a prison term of not more than 18 months or both.

Again, a Bank of Ghana licence issued to the foreign exchange bureau should be displayed in the premises of the bureaux. In addition, all foreign exchange bureaux are required to affix the forex bureau logo in front of their premises.

“It is unlawful to price, advertise or demand payment for goods and services in foreign currency in Ghana”, the Central Bank emphasised.

“Always remember, the sole legal tender in Ghana is the Ghana Cedi and the Ghana pesewas”, it advised consumers.

It added that “the proof of customer identification is a requirement which helps to reduce fraud, money laundering and terrorist financing risks among others.”

Safety tips

  • Look out for a valid Bank of Ghana licence, displayed in the premises of the foreign exchange bureau before transacting business with them.
  • You will be required to provide Identification Documents (ID) before conducting any transaction with a foreign exchange bureau. These include passport, driver’s licence, voter’s ID or the National ID card. If your Foreign Exchange Bureau does not require an ID from you, or does not retain a copy of your ID, report them to the Bank of Ghana. Note: The ECOWAS ID card (Ghana Card) will be the sole ID for financial transactions from 1st July 2022.
  •  After transacting business with a licenced foreign exchange bureau, insist on your receipt, which bears the bureau’s name, amount purchased and traded rate. Be sure to keep your receipt for inspection by BOG or law enforcement if needed.
  • If you do business with a “black market” foreign exchange operator, you are likely to trade in fake currency, to be drawn into money laundering, terrorist financing or to be attacked by unscrupulous persons, including armed robbers. Avoid them!
  •  Any person with foreign currency (resident or non-resident) who wishes to transact any business in Ghana should exchange their foreign currency for Ghana Cedis at any licensed foreign exchange bureau or universal bank.
  • The licence issued to foreign exchange bureaux by Bank of Ghana permits them to engage ONLY in on–the–spot selling and buying of foreign currencies. It is unlawful for you to deposit Ghana Cedis with a foreign exchange bureau at an

Meanwhile, the maximum value per transaction that may be carried out at a foreign exchange bureau is $10,000.

Source: myjoyonline.com

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