The Bank of Ghana (BoG) has included the Student Loan Trust Fund (SLTF) in the Credit Reporting System (CRS).
This means that the details of students who borrow from the trust will be included in the credit reference bureau to maintain their profile of credit behavior.
The measure is intended to stimulate SLTF’s recovery efforts and also to discourage borrowers from defaulting.
SLTF chief executive Nana Kwaku Agyei Yeboah told the Daily Graphic that the BoG’s move was a huge reprieve that would boost the fund’s loan collection efforts.
“The BoG adding us as an institution the credit referral system is actually a big boost in our loan collection efforts,” he said.
The measure, he said, meant that borrowers could strengthen their creditworthiness and history “when they start repaying, thus serving as an attraction to access other facilities such as bank loans and mortgages. the future “.
Being part of CRS will also allow the SLTF to obtain additional information and contacts from its borrowers to help them find where they will be for the repayment of loans they took out during their studies.
Nana Yeboah explained that the benefits of joining CRS are quite huge, as borrowers can use it to become creditworthy and receive other services.
CRS is a database established under Law 726 to promote the sharing of information on debtors’ credit history with lenders and other users of the system.
Sharing credit information is beneficial for both lenders and borrowers or debtors, as it helps lenders or creditors better assess the credit risk of each borrower or debtor.
The BOG recently expanded the list of institutions to participate in the CRS established under the Credit Reporting Act, 2007 (Act 762) to include the SLTF.
The list of institutions required to participate in the Credit Reporting System (CRS) established under the Credit Reporting Act, 2007 (Law 726) has been expanded to include telecommunications companies and utilities.
Some are retailers, mobile money operators, financial technology companies (FinTechs), government institutions that provide credit to SMEs, institutions that provide identification documents, entities that provide goods and services. on a post-paid or phased basis, student loan programs provided by government agency (s) and other entities that have relevant data and information in accordance with authorized purposes of the credit bureaus.
The repayment of loans, said the CEO of SLTF, was very important because it was the repaid money that was used to grant loans to students entering higher education institutions.
“If you don’t pay, it means other students can’t benefit from it and so that’s very important,” Mr. Yeboah said.
“Understanding the borrower’s credit history helps us prescribe the right collection strategies. For example, at the Student Loan Trust Fund, we have facilities such as forbearance payment, postponement and reduction or hesitation in interest rates, ”he said.
With the new development of adding SLTF to CRS, Mr. Yeboah said that SLTF would undertake financial literacy initiative for students in different institutions to understand it (development) as it was a new thing.
“Now we are going to educate them to make them understand how Ghana is going, that it is better to guide your credit history,” he said.
No guarantor policy
Mr Yeboah said the trust fund was waiting for the government to give the green light to launch the non-guarantor policy, saying students would be notified of the non-guarantor policy when it took off.
He said that in addition to going to all higher education institutions to educate students, the trust fund would use other means such as social media, website, among others for easy access to information, regardless of where everyone is.
“Now the GhanaCard will help us identify borrowers and track them better than the guarantor, because in the past we only worked with the SSNIT database.
“The GhanaCard is synchronized with all the other cards, so we now have access to more databases from which we can track the student. So that would help us to follow borrowers better with CRS than we previously did with the guarantor, he said.