The BUSAC Fund, a grant mechanism established in support of the Ghanaian private sector to advocate to local, regional and national authorities for changes to legal and regulatory framework to enhance business activities has made positive impacts after the first five years of its life.
The Fund has enhanced the knowledge, business efficency and networking capacity of numerous small businesses in the private sector.
At an event Tuesday February 16, 2010 to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Fund and to showcase its achievements, speaker after speaker was full of commendation for the Fund and urged for more support for the second phase.
Rev. (Dr) Joyce Aryee, CEO of the Ghana Chamber of Mines in an address indicated how useful the Fund has been to the Chamber. She said the BUSAC Fund has enhanced the Chamber’s advocacy capacity and it has been able to make impacts into the activities of regulatory bodies, such as the Minerals Commission and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and civil society organizations.
She also made remarks about the usefulness of mining to Ghana, but cited some of the challenges that the mining sector in Ghana faces. According to Rev. Dr. Aryee, the artisanal mining sector is unregulated, involves taking of land
She asked that small scale licensed mining should be encouraged enough to grow, because, she said in some countries, it is the small-scale miners that become large-scale miners. She said artisanal mining is a livelihood for many Ghanaians, and needs to be encouraged.
Rev. Dr. Aryee said the Chamber aims at seeing mining mainstreamed into the development agenda of Ghana. She said that is what countries like Canada, the United States, South Africa and Australia have done.
In her remarks, she said BUSAC facilitates information sharing and has reduced public sector suspicion of private sector.
The main donor of the BUSAC Fund is DANIDA, and the others are DFID and USAID.
By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi