Kosi Yankey-Ayeh (3rd from left) and representatives of partnering organizations in a photograph
THE NATIONAL Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI) has entered into a partnership with four strategic organizations to provide assistance that will accelerate the growth of Ghanaian-owned micro, small and medium scale enterprises (MSMEs).
The agreement was reached under the GH₵70 million NBSSI Mastercard Foundation Young Africa Works initiative which had a goal of creating over 36000 jobs within a two-year period through effective collaboration with partners.
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed in Accra on Wednesday between NBSSI and the organizations that included Intelligent Capital, a private start-up development consortium; Ghana Tech Lab, a digital solutions provider; She Hub, a women-focused entrepreneurship centre; and the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), which provides networking support to businesses.
Executive Director of NBSSI, Kosi Yankey-Ayeh, said managing the Covid-19 pandemic which culminated in strict adherence to safety protocols and imposition of lockdown measures had altered timelines for implementation of programmes and access to beneficiaries.
“I can say that within the first year, we have hit the target of majority of interventions. The goal now is to sustain and move it to the next level,” she said.
Chief Executive officer of AGI, Seth Twum-Akwaboah, said aside policy advocacy that the AGI was known for, it was also committed to business development services which made the partnership with NBSSI prudent.
Majority of members of the association, he said, were faring badly due to Covid-19 and therefore such an intervention from the NBSSI was apt.
He indicated that the acceleration of Ghanaian businesses was critical, especially at the time when the country had decided to open its trade borders as a result of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement.
“The perception is that, this is something for the big companies and those who are exporting. It is not so as within your own market; your market can be taken away from you if you are not efficient and competitive,” he said.
Erica Adutwumwaa Kyere, Executive Director of She Hub, said the partnership with NBSSI provided an opportunity to reach out to more women on a larger scale to help the Young Africa Work initiative achieve its objective of targeting its intervention to 70 per cent of women.
By Issah Mohammed