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Business News of Thursday, 22 October 2015

Source: GNA

Economist calls on Entrepreneurs to be innovative

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Dr Festus Ebo Turkson, Senior Lecturer, University of Ghana, has called on young entrepreneurs to be innovative, effective and efficient in their business operations.

He said business owners should be able to motivate their workforce and build systems to be able to delegate some of their duties to others.

Dr Turkson was speaking at the launch of the Enhancing Development of Ghana Entrepreneurs (EDGE) programme, stakeholder conference and exhibition to assist Micro Small Enterprises (MSE) overcome barriers to growth and improve competition by equipping them with the necessary skills.

EDGE, is a new initiative of the “Enhancing Growth in New Enterprises (ENGINE) programme, a multi-year entrepreneurship development programme implemented by Technoserve with funding from the United Kingdom through the Department for International Development (DFID).

The initiative was also to provide resources to improve on their business plans and internal operations, while creating a thriving community of entrepreneurs through increased access to business development services and financing.

He also asked the entrepreneurs to join network of business associations, while growing and expanding their business operations with timelines.

He, therefore, called on government to continue to create a conducive business environment to grow and expand the small medium scale businesses in the country for national development.

Dr Rashid Pelpuo, Minister of State in Charge of Private Sector Development said government wants to see an economy that was productive with young entrepreneurs adding value to the country's raw materials to change the structure of the economy.

He said government over the years has introduced a lot of interventions to propel young people in their business operations to support the development of the economy for national development.

The Minister announced that government in collaboration with its partners would be organising an SME fair to link small businesses to financiers who would be ready to support in the development and expansion of these businesses.

He commended the private sector, especially Technoserve and its partners for supporting entrepreneurs to expand their businesses and also provide them with technical support.

Mr Jim MacAlpine, the Country Director, DFID said Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) were critical to the country's sustainable economic develop story, because they have the potential to create the jobs that could transform the lives of the growing number of young people in Ghana.

He said Ghana was recorded on the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor report as the fourth highest country in African in terms of the likelihood of young people starting a business for themselves.

He said, however, the same report also highlighted that these businesses were less likely to grow or create jobs for others, than similar businesses in many other countries, where small business could quickly grow to create 20 or more jobs.

"Trying to help entrepreneurs and SMEs find solutions to the problems that are holding back the growth of their businesses is the reason why the UK government, through the DFID, is supporting the EDGE annual series," he added.

Mr Samuel Baba Adongo, the Programme Director, ENGINE Programme said the maiden conference was designed to interactively address pertinent issues facing entrepreneurs in the Ghanaian MSE ecosystem, while designing a roadmap to strengthen entrepreneurship in the country.

He said the conference would culminate in the crafting of the bundle of actionable solutions aimed at strengthening the best practices to achieve firm, level-specific scalable solutions for promoting and deepening entrepreneurship development in the country.

"Overall, the conference will produce a report on practical measures aimed at supporting MSE to achieve profitability goals and sustainable development, while fostering networks among entrepreneurship stakeholders to share knowledge that can help them refine and improve their business models," he added.

The conference included breakout sessions, panel discussions, presentations and interactive dialogues designed to facilitate awareness of the challenges and opportunities of setting up or expanding existing sustainable entrepreneurial ventures.