BoN to modernise the economy

Immigration policy should be revamped
The central bank has written letters to four ministries to sensitise them on the findings of a study the central bank carried out regarding the immigration policy.
The governor of the Bank of Namibia (BoN), Johannes !Gawaxab, says the central bank is looking at possibilities of working with various ministries and agencies in a bid to modernise the economy through digitalisation.
He suggested that agencies such as the Master of the High Court and Business and Intellectually Property Authority (Bipa) should be digitalised to speed up services, while commercial banks should be allowed to have access to the database of the ministry of home affairs, immigration, safety and security.
!Gawaxab spoke at State House last week during a courtesy call to president Hage Geingob, vice president Nangolo Mbumba and several other high-ranking government officials.
!Gawaxab said that in the past month, the BoN wrote letters to four ministries - home affairs, immigration, safety and security, as well to labour, finance and trade, innovation and industrialisation, to sensitise them on the findings of a study the central bank carried out regarding the immigration policy.
“If we can give our commercial banks access to the home affairs database, we can help eliminate fraud. This could be a big project between home affairs and the banks. We will ask the board to allow us to assist Bipa, within our development mandate. They wrote to us requesting help to digitalise their documentation because currently, their documents are all just papers and files lying everywhere,” he said.
He said the introduction of digital identity documents (IDs) can help stop identity theft and fraud and improve efficiency by using technology efficiently.
He added that they also would like to get involved with helping the Master of the High Court by digitalising their documents to improve efficiency when dealing with issues of orphans.
!Gawaxab said they were looking at a study in Brazil and India, where the rural economy was being integrated into the mainstream economy.
This would help the informal economy like taxi owners/drivers, domestic workers and farmworkers.
The deputy governor of the BoN, Ebson Uanguta, said Namibia must use the immigration policy to attract investment as a study has revealed that for every foreigner employed in Namibia, there are three local jobs created.
“The immigration policy must be flexible and dynamic. Currently, we have been using that policy as a way of policing and protecting our jobs, but at the same time we should use the policy to attract the skills that we do not have,” he said.
Uanguta took time to explain why some digital platforms such as PayPal were not operating in Namibia, saying these platforms are international platforms whose operations are volume based. - Nampa