Central Bank Prepares to Implement Credit Union Regulations

GANTA, Nimba – The Central Bank of Liberia, in collaboration with the Liberia Credit Union National Association, has concluded an exercise meant to familiarize credit union leaders with soon to be enforced regulations.

The workshop, which drew representation from institutions in Bong, Lofa, and Nimba, aimed to introduce participants to a section of the Credit Union Regulatory Act of 1999, which empowered the CBL to regulate, monitor, and supervise credit unions.

The law provides the minimum requirements and guidelines required of credit unions, however, it has never been enforced since it was enacted.

With the act soon to be enforced, Garjay Davis of the CBL’s Supervisory and Regulatory Department outlined the basic requirements for applying for the annually renewable operational license.

One participant at the workshop was former Lofa superintendent and chairman of the Lofa Economic Development Credit Union, Galakpai Kortimah. Kortimah also chairs the Lofa branch of the Liberia Credit Union National Association.

He emphasized the necessity of the workshop. Kortimah said older financial institutions were not regulated by the CBL and may not fully understand the regulatory framework that the CBL would soon be implementing.

He added, “When we get back to our various locations, we will also be training other credit union leaders who were not able to be a part of the training here, so that they can know how to go about in running a credit union.”

In Liberia, credit unions are more popular in rural areas, as they have been making a recent comeback as a means of filling in the gap for financial services where banks do not exist. Unlike banks, these financial institutions are owned and operated by members.

Featured photo by Jefferson Krua

A resident of Ganta, Nimba County, Arrington has a background working with credit unions and other organizations dedicated to rural finance.

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