Stanbic Bank Ghana has organised a special virtual conference for Ghanaian Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).
It was held on the theme “Building Agility in the COVID-19 Era”, and hosted by the Executive Director of the National Board Small Scale Industries (NBSSI), Mrs Kosi Yankey-Ayeh, and Head of Evaluation and Registration at the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA), Mr Percy Adomako-Agyekum.
According to Mrs Yankey-Ayeh, the NBSSI recognised the distress of MSMEs during this period and indicated that the primary concern as a government agency during this pandemic was to provide technical and financial support to MSMEs to ensure that they survive COVID-19 and grow into viable businesses.
“Considering the mandate and work of the NBSSI, now is the time for us to respond to the call to action to support MSMEs in Ghana.
Since the outbreak of the pandemic, NBSSI has initiated and rolled out some programmes and projects that are geared towards providing support for MSMEs across Ghana”, Mrs Yankey-Ayeh said.
MSMEs, she said, must recognise the opportunities available to them and take advantage of the crisis to build resilient businesses and ensure that they were positioned as strategic partners in Ghana’s development post the COVID-19 pandemic.
For his part, Mr Adomako-Agyekum said within the framework of the prevailing circumstances, the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) had reviewed its systems to include virtual facility inspection and expedited safety checks to ensure that MSMEs get their authorisations in time.
“We’ve shrunk our processes without compromising on safety and our facility inspection procedure has been reviewed to include virtual inspection so industries can operate without delays”, he said.
Impact/way forward While the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted both larger firms and MSMEs, the impact on MSMEs is especially severe due to their higher levels of vulnerability and lower resilience.
In Ghana, MSMEs have been documented as the backbone of the economy, contributing over 70 per cent of the country’s GDP.
Unfortunately, they are the ones hit hardest by the fall-out of the pandemic.
Solutions are, therefore, needed to give them the support they need to survive and continue to contribute to the economy.
It is within this context that Stanbic Bank Ghana has put together a series of webinars targeted specifically at MSMEs to provide them with the necessary tools and advisory support to enable them to thrive beyond the pandemic.