Accra, Dec. 1, GNA – Government will provide financial and technical support to over 50, 000 startups and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in 2024, Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has said.
The support is under the « You Start » initiative spearheaded by the Ghana Enterprises Agency (GEA) to create jobs, economic growth and prosperity for the younger population.
Vice-President Bawumia said this at the You Start Grant Export 2023 where he together with Mr Ken Ofori Atta, Finance Minister, K.T Hammond, Minister for Trade and Industry and Mrs Kosi Yankey-Ayeh, CEO of GEA handed over Gh¢ 65 million to 3, 000 beneficiaries across the 16 regions of Ghana.
The event marks just phase one of the You Start Ghana Jobs and Skills project funded by the World Bank, which seeks to address the Ghana’s unemployed youth population whilst imbibing in them entrepreneurial skills.
The Vice President said in September 2023, through the GEA, the Government approved over Gh¢ 35 million Ghana cedis for 272 MSMEs under various components of the Ghana Economic Transformation Project.
« And through the Ghana Jobs and Skills Project, government will give a grant support of Gh¢ 65 million for 3, 000 start ups and MSMSs. Total amount for beneficiaries in 2023 alone is totalling Gh¢ 100 million, » he said.
Dr Bawumia said the grant funding was an investment in the dreams, aspirations and potentials of the youth and through strategic partnerships government was creating an environment of possibilities where ideas flourished, businesses thrived and individuals found the means to unleash their potentials.
He said: « The You Start initiative ensures that the beneficiaries are not just recipients of money but are also active contributors to the socioeconomic development. We are providing an ecosystem and empowering the youth for job creation and prosperous future. »
He said a special grant package had been designed to support and empower persons with disabilities, adding that there was better future for entrepreneurs, start ups and established businesses.
The Vice-President said despite the global economic challenges and disruptions the Government had created 2.1 million jobs in the last seven years, better than any government in the fourth Republic and even since independence.
Madam Kosi Yankey-Ayeh, Chief Executive Officer GEA, said the government was resolute in its programme to make the Ghanaian youth and their businesses economically viable and actors of socioeconomic growth.
« Two years ago the Government started to empower the youth with the You Start initiative and over 30, 000 people are into gainful employment across the length and breath of Ghana, » she said.
Mrs Yankey-Ayeh said Ghana Enterprises Agency had business advisors in the district that closed the beneficiaries and would be monitoring to ensure the key performance indicators (KPIs) were met.
« We shall continue to put them through coaching and mentoring to make sure the businesses are going according to plan. The managers of our Regional Business Advisory Centres would continue to provide oversight roles, »
Patrick Ofoe Nudzi