Ghana starts gold purchase programme to strengthen currency

A brick of gold is seen on an artisanal trader’s desk in Tarkwa, Ghana, File. Reuters/Matthew Mpoke Bigg

By Reuters

Ghana has started a bulk purchase programme to buy gold locally to raise the gold component of its reserves, Central Bank Governor Ernest Addison said on Tuesday, in a bid to strengthen the cedi currency without increasing inflation.

“We have started a bulk purchase program, domestic, where we buy gold locally and try to raise the gold component in our level of reserves.

This is where the currency focus is,” Addison said at a conference. The gold, oil and cocoa producing country saw consumer inflation rise to an 18-year record of almost 24% in April despite efforts to contain price hikes and spur recovery.

The Ghana cedi saw the worst depreciation against the dollar of any currency besides the Russian ruble between January and March, according to Reuters data. Its value has mostly stabilized since then, although it experienced another downturn over the last week.