The presidential couple, H. E. Obiang Nguema Mbasogo and Constancia Mangue, oversaw the ceremony which took place on 28th April, in the presence of political and administrative figures, the executive of the Equatorial Guinea National Bank (BANGE), and representatives from other banking institutions operating in the country, together with members of the public from the district, in the Province of Bioko Norte.
The Mayor of Baney, JesA�s Raso Kuku, was responsible for giving a welcome speech at this crowded event. After that, the president of the Board of Directors of the Equatorial Guinea National Bank, Crisantos Ebe Mba, presented a detailed report on the operation of the financial institution, its aims and its achievements since its creation in 2005.
It is a special day for BANGE because, with the opening of this agency which brings the total to 28, it is the culmination of the huge national expansion programme for the bank, which was created to contribute in a direct way towards the economic and financial development of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, according to its president.
During its existence, the BANGE has become an essential economic and financial player in the country, and an ambassador for the strength and credibility of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea’s financial system.
He also added that the idea of creating BANGE by the President of the Republic not only emerged through his vision of expansion on a national level, but also internationally. In bringing about this aim, the institution is continuing its work of expansion to the five continents. In fact, it is currently on the way towards opening an agency in Cameroon, while it is looking at the possibility of opening others, after receiving requests from countries such as Uganda and Ivory Coast. The Chinese monetary authority has also just given permission for the installation of an office in the Asian country.
Ebe Mba thus affirmed that the BANGE had become one of the most profitable, solvent and efficient banks in the African subregion.
At the same event, it was revealed that the office of the BANGE in Madrid, which has now dealt with more than a thousand investors, will soon become a branch. During this time, this office has provided growth for the international credibility of the institution, contributing to the increase and consolidation of the extensive network of international correspondent banks, which has allowed the BANGE to efficiently handle international trade operations.
The presence of the presidential couple at the opening confirms their interest in the growth of the banking system in our country, and the population’s access to it, in order to boost the development of all layers of our society, said Lucas Abaga Nchama, Minister for Finance, the Economy and Planning.
For the head of the nation’s financial sector, the initiative by the BANGE in opening an agency in Baney fits with the policy of the President, H. E. Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, in bringing the administration closer to the most secluded parts of the country. The BANGE is a source of pride for all Equatoguineans, he added. Since its creation, this financial institution has been growing with an expansionist perspective, at both a national and international level, which has made it renowned within the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC).
Abaga Nchama also spoke of the importance of the BANGE in the financial training of small and medium sized business leaders, together with those without access to banking services.
According to the Minister for Finance, the institution has captured a large part of the banking market with respect to others operating in the country, and provides products which are accessible to the population, with credit for agriculture, micro-businesses and the small nascent industrial sector; progress which is making it more and more the bank for all and the one closest to the population.
Continuing with his speech, the Government member pointed out that, within the financial system, the banks are the means for channelling savings. The efficiency of the banking sector is crucial for economic development, as it is difficult for a country without a solid banking system to grow in a sustainable manner.
In another part of his speech he declared that, at a difficult economic juncture such as the one being experienced by many developing countries, and particularly those producers of hydrocarbons within the CEMAC, the efforts of the financial system are of huge importance in allowing the private and public sectors to contribute to the recovery and maintenance of macroeconomic stability, as a condition for reducing poverty and social exclusion.
In addition, he congratulated the institution for complying with the demands and commitments on a subregional level, such as those of the regulatory body of CEMAC, the Central African Baking Commission (COBAC), which is forever demanding additional measures to guarantee solvency and profitability of banks, and he assured that, in Equatorial Guinea, the BANGE is always at the forefront in adapting to new challenges within the sector, as it intervenes with greater rigour in the management of risk and achieves, thanks to a series of developments, the creation of products which are more accessible and efficient, in order to satisfy the financial needs of economic agents.
The Minister for Finance, the Economy and Planning, as regulator and supervisor of the national financial system, celebrated and congratulated the BANGE initiative in the consolidation of its expansion plan through the opening of a new agency in Baney that, without doubt, will serve as an economic engine for the district, which will not only create employment and wealth, but also prestige and the attraction of economic operators to our country, concluded Lucas Abaga Nchama.
For his part, the Head of State began his speech by extending to all the greetings of peace which reigns in the nation, and mentioned the history of Baney, which until a short time ago was a village, and has now become a city.
Furthermore, H. E. Obiang Nguema Mbasogo recalled the idea of the creation of the BANGE, which has become a large bank due to the energy of the current board. The President also appealed to the inhabitants of the district to develop the area, in order to make it a benchmark city.
I have now brought you a bank, so people can stop keeping money at home. Modern life does not allow money to be kept at home, because money should be in a suitable place; I am here to encourage this population to take into account the importance of the creation of a bank in a city”, indicated the Head of State.
The rest of his instructions also indicated that a bank is an institution that should not remain within its headquarters, but must accompany economic operators, providing credit to those who wish to develop economic activities, and help them with the good management of repayment, and the periodical holding of markets in the carious urban districts.
He also mentioned the need for children’s education, awareness-raising in the population so that they may live in harmony, and he invited the board of the BANGE to recruit young people from Baney to work in the new banking agency.
In 2017, the BANGE was awarded prizes of international recognition from the financial sector, such as those from The European and The Banker, in addition to obtaining, for the second year running from the same international institutions, the prize for best bank of the year in Equatorial Guinea (2016 and 2017) Its net banking product reached a total of 44,243 million Franco CFA, and closed the 2017 year with a net profit of 5,090 million Franco CFA. It currently has 94,470 clients, and a credit portfolio of 186 thousand million.
In addition to a priest’s blessing, the cutting of the ceremonial ribbon, the visit to the facilities and the presentation of prizes to the presidential couple, the ceremony closed with a group photo.
Source: Official Web Page of the Government of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea