The novel MSME and Entrepreneurship Policy is to anchor a new age of entrepreneurship within the micro small and medium enterprise MSME sector.
The policy will also help stimulate the growth of MSMEs to produce world-class products and services capable of competing locally and internationally.
It is being implemented by the Ghana Enterprise Agency (GEA) and will provide the administrative, regulatory, institutional and legal framework for the growth and development of the sector.
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A Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Nana Ama Dokua Asiamah-Adjei, at the Chamber SME Business Forum in Accra, observed that the GEA will lead in the implementation of the policy and also help with the formalisation of businesses.
She said this will help MSMEs to have access to the government’s key interventions such as the COVID-19 Response Grant for SMEs.
According to her, the policy provides clear policy direction and opportunities for all actors within the MSME space that will enable them contribute meaningfully to Ghana’s economic development.
“Permit me to mention some important initiatives of the government that are targeted at MSME development.
“I am happy to announce that the first MSME and Entrepreneurship Policy, ever developed in the history of Ghana, was recently launched by the President,” she said.
She stated that the government through the Ministry of Trade and Industry has recently restructured and resourced the GEA, formerly NBSSI, as the apex body mandated to coordinate and promote the development of MSMEs in Ghana.
The government is also establishing 67 Business Resource Centres (BRCs) to provide a broad range of enhanced Business Development Services (BDS) for MSMEs across the country.
37 commenced operations in August last year while additional 30 are expected to be completed this year. Every business operator particularly, the one district, one factory (1D1F) companies will have access to the services of the BRCs because the country has been zoned per the number of the BRCs.
Mrs Asiamah-Adjei noted that the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) provides a lot of opportunities particularly to MSMEs as they have access to the entire African market.
She said the ministry will continue to support business operators to take advantage of the numerous opportunities under the AfCFTA.
To achieve this, she said a comprehensive National Action Plan for harnessing the benefits of AfCFTA has been developed under which an Enterprise Support Programme has also been initiated.
She said as part of the implementation of the programme, 100 companies were being supported with various forms of assistance to export under the AfCFTA to the rest of Africa.
“The implementation of the programme is being coordinated by the newly established National AfCFTA Coordination Office. The ministry will continue to engage with business operators on issues relating to export of goods under the AfCFTA.”
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The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of GEA, Mrs Kosi Yankey-Ayeh, said the aftermath of the pandemic was having a tremendous impact on businesses, especially the MSMEs sector.
She said these MSMEs form 90 per cent of all businesses and contribute to about 70 per cent of employment.
As a result, she said the GEA has a critical role to play in assisting these businesses navigate through the storm.
“Digital technology is one of the key tools for unlocking MSMEs development as well as increasing the dynamism of business owners, and it has proven to be extremely beneficial to our MSMEs.”
She said the agency was able to support over 300,000 MSMEs through various initiatives, the largest being the CAP Support Scheme.
“Our vision is to reach out to more MSMEs waiting to benefit from our interventions and also to create a vibrant and world class entrepreneurial economy to foster their growth and development.”