Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia has hailed the innovative strides being made by players and stakeholders in the Ghanaian digital ecosystem, especially in the area of FinTech, saying the technological feats chalked so far vindicate Government’s decision to lay a solid foundation for the digital transformation of the Ghanaian economy for inclusive development.
Speaking at the award ceremony for the first eCedi Hackathon competition hosted by the Bank of Ghana in partnership with EMTECH Solution Inc. on Thursday, December 14, 2023 Dr Bawumia expressed delight at the ongoing embrace of digital solutions to solve everyday problems, and encouraged the youth to engage more with technology.
“I am particularly excited at the prospects of harnessing the power of technology to address our developmental problems through cooperative competition by tapping the imaginative capabilities of solution developers, innovators, user experience designers, consumer insight experts, and financial service providers.
“This evening’s programme therefore is more than an awards ceremony. It is a celebration of our capacity to co-create innovative solutions that respond to the diverse needs of the Ghanaian society by leveraging the tools of digital technology.”
Reiterating Government’s commitment to fostering the growth of a digital ecosystem in Ghana, Dr Bawumia stated:
“Over the past few years, the government has made a lot of investment in a curated set of national infrastructure that has laid a solid foundation for the digital transformation of the Ghanaian economy for inclusive economic development. These include the National Identification and Digital Address Systems, e-government services, National Payments, and Digital Financial Services platforms, the backbone of which is the robust broadband infrastructure. These interventions have brought tremendous improvements to the various sectors of Ghanaian society.
“Based on evidence, we are so far convinced that we can accelerate the development of our country and improve the welfare of many Ghanaians if digital solutions are widely adopted. Hence, the government’s national digitalisation agenda seeks to foster the adoption of digital technology in every sector and across the country in furtherance of that objective. In this regard, the government, in 2022 embarked on a project to further improve broadband access to create the necessary conditions for nationwide efficient and quality digital services thereby stimulating a vibrant digital innovation ecosystem. It is expected that solution developers and innovators will take advantage of the government’s massive investment in core infrastructure for a digital economy to come up with solutions that address the myriad needs of the country.”
The Vice President commended the Bank of Ghana for the Hackathon, noting that Ghana is one of three countries in Africa currently piloting a CBDC.
“This feat further underscores your established leadership in digital transformation in sub-Sahara Africa,” he added.
The eCedi Hackathon is a cutting-edge competition that brings together the brightest minds in technology and finance to explore the endless possibilities of a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC). The event is designed to foster innovation, drive technological advancement, and develop solutions that will redefine the Ghanaian financial landscape, according to officials of the Bank of Ghana.
Globally, 88 competitors took part in the Hackathon, with different teams presenting innovative ideas and solutions on different use cases of the e-cedi over a 12-week period. The event also provided a platform for developers, innovators, and blockchain enthusiasts to showcase their creativity by exploring the many possibilities of CBDC technology and contribute to the future of Ghana’s digital financial ecosystem.
The project is part of the eCedi research project and presents an opportunity for the Bank to explore emerging technologies, foster creativity and contribute to the advancement of eCedi development.
After a rigorous process which involved pitches, prototyping and demonstrations of efficacy, Forward Titans emerged the overall best, followed by Nokofio and Paycode. They received 500,000, 300,000 and 200,000 eCedi respectively to invest and upscale their projects.