The government has disbursed over GHC100 million as grant funding and training to youth-led start-ups and Micro, Small and Medium-Scale Enterprises (MSMEs) to generate youth entrepreneurs and leverage Ghana’s youthful population to stimulate economic empowerment and development.
Through the Ghana Jobs and Skills Project (GJSP) and the Ghana Economic Transformation Project (GETP) implemented by the Ghana Enterprises Agency, the government has provided capacity building on business management, technical assistance and grant funding to over 30,000 persons, selected start-ups and MSMEs, with many more expected to receive same in the coming year.
Addressing thousands of youth drawn from across the country at the end of a YouStartGrant Expo dubbed “Empowering Youth Entrepreneurs for a Resilient Economy” in Accra, the Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia reiterated the government’s determination to provide the youth with the necessary training and funds to make it on their own and contribute their quota to national development.
“It is exciting to note that these initiatives are ongoing efforts by the government to create an entrepreneurial economy. In September 2023, the government, through the Ghana Enterprises Agency, approved over GHC35 Million to 272 MSMEs under various components of the Ghana Economic Transformation Project (GETP).
“Also, between September 2021 and August 2022, the government supported over 780 firms with grant funding of over GHS65 Million under the GETP.
“I am happy to announce that the Government of Ghana, through the Ghana Jobs and Skills Project (GJSP) and the Ghana Economic Transformation Project (GETP), will award grant support of almost GHS 65 million to 3,000 start-ups and MSMEs gathered here, with the total support to beneficiaries in 2023, totalling GHS 100 million. It is also important to note that a special grant package has been designed to support and empower Persons With Disabilities (PWD),” he announced.
Over 30,000 young persons and MSMEs have already received between four and five days of Business Management Training, with more entrepreneurs and start-ups and established enterprises expected to receive grant funding in 2024 under the YouStartGrant initiative.
“By the end of these two Projects, the government will have supported more than 50,000 start-ups and MSMEs with technical and financial support through the Ghana Enterprises Agency.”
The overall impact of these two initiatives extends beyond financial figures and statistical metrics, the Vice President noted.
“This grant funding is not just a monetary transaction; it is an investment in the dreams, aspirations and potential of the youth. It is a signal that shows the youth of this great nation that ‘it is possible’. Through strategic partnerships and targeted interventions, we are creating an environment of possibilities where ideas flourish, businesses thrive and individuals find the means to unleash their potential. And it is surely the complementary pathway to nurture and reap the demographic dividend of having a youthful population.
“By providing financial resources alongside targeted training programs, we are empowering the youth for the paradigm shift of job creation as opposed to job seekers. I strongly believe that such Technical Assistance and catalytic grants will drive the objective of promoting private investments and business growth. This is a strategic move towards industrialisation, export expansion, and job creation.
“Let us recognise the significance of today’s grant signing ceremony in shaping the destiny of our nation. Let it re-echo in our minds and hearts that investing in the strengthening of the nation’s youth and businesses through these interventions stimulates and lays the foundations for economic growth and prosperity for all.
“By empowering the youth, we are contributing to a secure future where no one is left behind, and our nation stands as an icon of success on the international stage.”
Rex Mainoo Yeboah, ISD