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Business News of Monday, 8 June 2020

Source: Business 24

MP urges more support for private sector to reduce import reliance

The country needs to do more for the private sector by way of providing stimulus packages and incentives in order to reduce reliance on imports and to build a formidable economy post-COVID-19, the Member of Parliament for Afigya Sekyere East, Mavis Nkansah-Boadu, has suggested.

“A vibrant and well-incentivised private sector with value addition to our raw materials, which has been the focus of this government, should be the way forward in order for us to become self-reliant and the economy much more resilient to contain external shocks,” the MP said in a statement on the floor of Parliament this week.

Ms. Nkansah-Boadu, a member of the majority side of the House, said in light of the excellent efforts and foreseeable success in Ghana’s fight against Covid-19, the country should shift its focus from a vulnerable-self-insufficient-import-driven economy to a strong-self-sufficient-export-driven economy.

Although she commended government for the steps taken to revive adversely affected local businesses, she argued that “more needs to be done in that regard”.

Most Ghanaian businesses have been hit hard as a result of the coronavirus outbreak, and the government has rolled out key measures to mitigate the economic impact. Among them is the GH¢600m Coronavirus Alleviation Programme (CAP) business support scheme intended to support small and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs).

The fund is intended to provide relief to SMEs across the country that have been negatively affected by the fallout of the disease.

About 200,000 SMEs are expected to benefit from the fund by receiving low-interest loans to support their enterprises.

The Ghanaian economy is projected this year to experience its lowest economic growth since 1983, with real GDP forecast to increase by just 1.5 percent as a result of the coronavirus shock.

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