Policy to assist SMEs to be launched

Mr Dawarnoba Baeka, the Acting Deputy Executive Director, National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI), has said the soon to be launched national policy on industry would provide the leverage for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to expand effectively.

He said it is anticipated that the policy would revitalize SMEs, promote competition and be the driving force in creating new industries and transforming the industrial and manufacturing sectors.

Mr Baeka said this at a one-day seminar for SMEs and entrepreneurs in the Hohoe Municipality dubbed, “Community SME Development and Promotion.”

The seminar, which attracted over 300 SMEs in and around Hohoe, was organised by Hohoe Municipal Business Advisory Centre (BAC) of NBSSI, and the Association of Small Scale Industries (ASSI) and sponsored by the Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA).

Mr Baeka said he was positive that the new industrial blueprint would suggest strategies that would find lasting solutions to the challenges facing the sector including lack of access to credit and markets.

Mr Elvis Asowoe, Head of Hohoe BAC, said unlike Ghana, Japan’s SMEs accounted for 99.7 percent of all enterprises, 70 percent of employees and more than 50 percent of value addition in the manufacturing industry making it the backbone of that economy.

He said if the country could adopt Japan’s approach of Organisation for SME and Regional Innovation (SMRJ) serving as a one-stop institution for all SMEs, rather than the splinter organisations such as the NBSSI, Ghana Export Promotion Council (GEPC), Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) and the Ghana Standards Board (GSB), “the business development leverage would have been better than where we find ourselves currently.”

Mr Asowoe said some of these institutions are not even present in all districts and regional capitals and in addition to operating from different offices.

Ms Emi Nishihata, representative of JICA, Ghana Office, said JICA has continuously supported the development of Ghana since 1970.

She said JICA intended to launch a quality and productivity improvement project by strengthening the institutional capacity of NBSSI/BAC as a Business Development Service provider for Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

Ms Nishihata said JICA’s on-going support to the industrial sector includeed exchange training and dialogue programmes and overseas cooperation in volunteerism, policy advisory for SMEs development and strengthening competency-based capacity training for Council for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (COTVET).

Togbega Gabusu VI, Paramount Chief of Gbi Traditional Area, said the socio-economic growth to trigger a middle-income status hinged on SMEs and called on the authorities to provide the leverage for SME to flourish.

Source: GNA

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