The UK through the Department for International Development (DFID) is working with Technoserve to support Ghanaian Micro and Small Enterprises (MSMEs) to grow and build competitive businesses.
The two organisations through a programme, dubbed: Enhancing Growth in New Enterprise (ENGINE) will help selected entrepreneurs to refine, improve and implement their business ideas out of which the very best would be chosen for more intensive support of funding, business services, help with access to finance and connections through business networks.
ENGINE is modeled on business plan competitions that TechnoServe has successfully implemented in more than 54 countries across Africa and Central America and is also rolling out elsewhere in Asia.
The programme, which will run for four and half years with funding support of 4.1 million from DFID, is expected to benefit 1,000 start-ups to grow and succeed.
Launching the programme, Mr Rashid Pelpuo, Minister of State, Private Sector Development, said government is working to introduce policies that would support the growth of Ghanaian businesses.
He said despite the largely conducive business atmosphere, more still needed to be done to improve the ease of doing business.
Mr Pelpuo said the country must work hard to be a desirable destination of choice and government is alive to this need to deepen the policy space to encourage and boost private sector performance.
Ms Sally Taylor, DFID Ghana Country Director said: “The UK Government recognises that small businesses are an important way to generate jobs and contribute to Ghana’s economic growth.”
She said by the end of 2015, through ENGINE and other programmes, DFID aims to assist 50,000 entrepreneurs and farmers to access the support they need to grow their businesses and increase their incomes.
We expect the programme to create 1,700 jobs, and envisage at least 30 per cent of participants successfully securing new commercial financial investment for their businesses as a result, she said.
Mr Samuel Baba Adongo, Deputy Country Director, said the first six months of the programme would be used to pilot the project in Accra before being extended to other parts of the country.
He said out of the 66 concepts received 22 per cent were in the area of agri-business and personal care, five per cent in information and Communication Technology and 15 per cent in light manufacturing.