Madam Ama Pomaa Boateng, the Deputy Minister of Communication and Digitalisation, says Artificial Intelligence (AI) is now driving global digital revolution and solving problems and challenges for emerging economies.
AI is the ability of a computer or a robot controlled by a computer to do tasks that are usually done by humans because they require human intelligence and discernment.
Madam Boateng said this in Accra at the first face-to-face meet-up networking event on AI, organised by the Ghana-India Kofi Annan Centre of Excellence in ICT (GI-KACE).
“Financial Inclusion using AI is a very good thing because it is part of the Sustainable Development Goals,” she said.
“It is actually seven out of the 17 goals that government and other institutions are working on by using AI to solve problems ….”.
The AI Knowledge Series Forum brought together students, innovators, financial services users, enthusiastic stakeholders and industry practitioners to support the community-building efforts of the AI ecosystem in Ghana.
Dr Collins Yeboah-Afari, the Director-General, GI-KACE, said harnessing AI was critical for national development, which had made life easier for the financial industry worldwide.
He said Ghana must consider targeting barriers that make access to financial knowledge and services limited or unavailable.
Mrs Nancy Imadi, the Head of Licensing and Product Approval, FinTech and Innovation Office, Bank of Ghana (BoG), noted that new financial service business models based on digital technologies, popularly referred to as FinTechs, were enabling inclusive access to financial services across diverse product types including savings, payment, credit, advisory services, investment management, insurance and pensions.
She said the Central Bank was excited about the good conversations around AI and the fact that people want to do responsible innovations.
That, she said, was the reason the BoG had setup the Sandbox project to regulate FinTech innovations.
Madam Delamazior Nyanyo, the Chief Executive Officer of JidiTrust, an informal digital business school, indicated that globally, there were 1.7 billion people who lacked access to financial knowledge and services.
She advised that more people, especially girls, should get into ICT and focus on AI to help use its services to their full potential and make sound financial decisions.
Mr Solomon Koomson, the Business Development Manager for Banking, said: “In helping financial inclusion, we need to make data-driven decisions”.
“AI is the future and the success of ‘FinClusion’ depends on it. Let’s adopt AI aggressively in all ‘FinClusion’ activities. In credit scoring, AI helps credit decision makers to achieve faster and more accurate risk assessment.”
Mr Emmanuel Mumuni, Senior National Coordinator, DTC-GIZ Ghana, said his organisation was working with local partners to train more people in AI as part of efforts to create a community of people knowledgeable about the subject.
Mr Richard Frimpong, Head, Business and Customer Relations, Grey Parrot, in his presentation, said financial inclusion was the efforts to make financial products and services accessible and affordable to all individuals and businesses, regardless of their personal network or company size.
The event focused on impacting financial services and inclusion as it is the leading innovation programme targeted at achieving developmental goals.
The AI Knowledge Series was organised in partnership with the Institute of ICT Professionals GH, AI Association Ghana, Runmila AI Institute, GIZ, DTC and Fair Forward.