Ghana: Mastercard coming to town

The game is about to change. VISA has dominated the credit, debit and ATM card scene in Ghana’s banking industry for several years now. As of today 25th August 2007, the following banks issue Visa cards in Ghana:

  • Barclays bank: Visa Electron cards
  • CAL Bank: Visa Electron cards
  • EcoBank Ghana: Visa Gold credit cards, Visa Classic debit cards, Visa Electron cards
  • GTB Ghana: Visa cards
  • SG-SSB: Visa Gold card, Visa Electron cards
  • Stanbic Bank: Visa Electron cards
  • Standard Chartered Bank: Visa Electron cards
  • UBA Ghana Ltd: Visa cards (has Visa accreditation but not issuing Visa cards yet)

The first hint that I saw about Mastercard cards being issued in Ghana was on Intercontinental Bank Ghana Ltd’s website in July this year. According to their website:


The Intercontinental Bank Mastercard, licensed by Mastercard International, is a credit card denominated in dollars. It is a global instrument recognised and accepted in over 210 countries worldwide.

The big news however is that, Ghana Commercial Bank (GCB) – the bank with the largest/widest branches in Ghana – will soon be issuing Mastercard products. According to JoyNews online:

GCB with its 135 networked branches and 10 agencies will sponsor affiliates and work with merchants as well as customers to roll out the various types of MasterCard including debits, credit and pre-paid.

A delegation from MasterCard International is currently in the country to finalize preparations to enable the bank introduce the card.

The Head of Marketing and Card Business at GCB, Alhaji Hussein Ibn Salifu has told JOY News that the bank will launch the MasterCard before the end of the year, explaining that with the introduction of MasterCard, customers of GCB will have access to their accounts in any part of the world.

GCB’s association with MasterCard dates back to the years when it introduced the first prepaid card, Mondex, another product of MasterCard. The bank officials say their electronic payment system will be integrated into the domestic platform being sponsored by the Bank of Ghana.

This is good. Affiliates on Internet programmes that only issue Mastercard debit cards will be able to access funds here in Ghana, when GCB’s ATMs are all upgraded.

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Oluniyi D. Ajao
Oluniyi D. Ajao is an Internet Entrepreneur and Tech Enthusiast based in South Africa. Follow him on twitter @niyyie for more tech updates.


  1. why is it that American express card cannot be used in ATM or even some shops in Ghana. Very bad i had a big problem

  2. I ve no any comment rather than request.My request is that how will u help me to ve either master ,visa card that can be use any where in the world plus the internet.Yours Anwar saleh

  3. Can Barclays Bank Visa Electron cards be used to shop online?…………Pls wat where is the card no positioned ?

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