By Ken Sackey, GNA
Accra, Aug. 08, GNA - A total of 1,350 entrepreneurs across the nation have benefited from government’s financial support package to grow their businesses.
They received amounts ranging from GH¢10,000.00 to GH¢100,000.00, under the National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Plan’s (NIEP) Presidential Business Support Programme.
The goal is to drive job and wealth creation for accelerated national development.
It is the brain child of the Ministry of Business Development and targeted at not only start-ups but existing businesses to directly give direct and indirect jobs.
The beneficiaries were selected from among more than 7,000 entrepreneurs.
They would pay an interest rate of 10 per cent compared with the prevailing average market rate of 26 per cent and the repayment would be done in three years.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, speaking at a ceremony held to present cheques for the various amounts, said countries that invested heavily in entrepreneurship development had made rapid economic strides.
Ghana, he added, had chosen that path and would create the environment for entrepreneurs and businesses to grow and prosper – to feed into the vision of a Ghana beyond aid.
“We are learning a lot from this global trend by wanting to develop an entrepreneurial economy and create the conducive and business friendly environment in our country.”
The President spoke of the vital role of the private sector had been playing in the development of the economy and said it would be given strong support to thrive.
He said although not all the over 7,000 applicants were able to access funding under the support programme they had undergone a well structured training that would help build their managerial capacities to sustain their businesses.
The Business Development Ministry would continue to aid beneficiaries of the programme with training and capacity building, mentorship and business advisory services, together with free accounting services for optimal performance.
He said given the training and support they had received “you must together be able to some 30,000 direct jobs within the next year and several thousands of indirect jobs”.
The President repeated his government’s determination to go the extra mile to create the right conditions for businesses to flourish, adding that, the positive macroeconomic indices was indicative of the progress it was making to revitalize the Ghanaian economy.
“Let me assure the Ghanaian people and the business community that my government would continue to work towards the creation of a conducive environment for the private sector to thrive.”
The Presidential Business Support Programme is in line with the President’s commitment to empower business to be competitive.
The support cuts across all economic sectors, places emphasis on women empowerment and changing the narrative of youth employment from job seekers to employment creators.