The government, through the Ghana Enterprises Agency (GEA), has commenced its disbursement of GHC35 million in grants to some 270 selected micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) under the Technical Assistance and Grant Programmes of the Ghana Economic Transformation Programme (GETP).
The grants will enable beneficiaries to fund various projects ranging from the purchase of machinery and equipment to working capital and last-mile infrastructure investments.
The Technical Assistance and Grant Programmes comprise three categories – namely Youth in MSME, Women MSME and SME High Growth Programmes, all of which are World Bank-funded under the Ghana Economic Transformation Project.
Speaking at the grant-signing ceremony in Accra, Minister of Trade and Industry Kobina Tahiru Hammond noted that the initiative forms part of the government’s efforts to strengthen local businesses and position them as viable entities for economic growth and transformation.
The programme, he further noted, is in line with the trade ministry’s efforts to develop SMEs so they become drivers of growth.
“Through a focused and strategic approach, Ghana aims to transform its economy by promoting the establishment and growth of industries across various sectors. To achieve this, the government follows a strategic roadmap that seeks to improve the competitiveness of local MSMEs and position them to benefit from existing and future global or regional trade opportunities – such as the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) initiative.
“It is expected that the investment made, as marked by the agreements signed today, will yield the desired results which will be crucial in transforming the business landscape. It is our earnest desire that these resources will help to boost production, exports and innovation across the MSME landscape,” the minister said.
The chief executive officer of GEA, Kosi Yankey-Ayeh, highlighted that the success has been made under the Ghana Economic Transformation Project.
She noted that over GHC65 million had been committed and disbursed to about 800 SMEs between September 2021 and January 2023 under the GETP.
According to her, almost 40% of the funding went into women-owned enterprises.
“So far, three interventions have successfully been implemented under phases 1 and 2 of the COVID-19 Response Grant Programme and this current SME High Growth Programme. Overall, the scheme has chalked up an over-90 percent satisfaction rate based on an online survey conducted in March 2022,” she outlined.
Categories of interventions
The SME High Growth Programme, piloted in October 2022, is focused on technical assistance which involves a four-month intensive business management training and capacity upgrade and a mentoring plan.
The programme is currently being implemented at full-scale across the country, since May 2023; and is targetted at assisting 2,000 high-growth SMEs’ aims to boost productivity and competitiveness, enabling these businesses to scale up their operations, increase sales and create sustainable jobs.
Next is the Youth in MSME Programme – targetting enterprises owned by young people between the ages of 18 – 40years; and the Women MSME Programme targetted at exclusively supporting female-owned enterprises, thus fostering gender diversity and their empowerment within the business community.
The grant programmes target MSMEs across various sectors including agriculture/agro-processing, construction, education, food and beverages, healthcare, ICT, manufacturing, textiles and garments, tourism and hospitality, trade/commerce in locally produced goods, and transport and logistics.