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Business News of Saturday, 4 November 2006

Source: GNA

Non traditional financial institutions paramount in promotion of small

scale enterprises-- MCE

Ofoase-Kokoben (Ash) , Nov.4, GNA-Madam Patricia Appiagyei, Kumasi Metropolitan Chief Executive has stated that credit unions and other non-traditional financial institutions are very paramount in the promotion of the growth of small and medium scale enterprises and the improvement of the lives of the people.

She said, with the complex procedures and processes and at times difficult conditions associated with accessing bank loans, credit unions have provided a flexible way for people who need small start-up capital to engage in some income generation activities.

Madam Appiagyei was speaking at the opening ceremony of a training workshop on promoting credit unions for improved standards of living at Pope John II Formation and Training Centre at Ofoase-Kokoben in the Amansie East district of Ashanti on Friday.

The three-day workshop, which is being organised by the committee on Entrepreneurship and self=96employment under the Department of Development and Social Service of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana is being attended by 36 members of the church from the 14 presbyteries of the church throughout the country.

It is to enhance the skills and competencies of participants in the promotion, formation and nurturing of credit unions in the church. Madam Appiagyei noted that, 93credit unions have helped filled the yawning gap in funding in most communities and have given birth and nurtured the culture of savings which was alien to many Ghanaians, especially women.

Credit unions afford many women the opportunity to access credits to start or expand their own businesses, thereby enabling them to sustain themselves and support their families=94, she added. The Reverend Kwabena Yeboah-Duah, National Director, Department of Development and Social Services said the Committee planned to promote credit unions in the church and to use it to facilitate and deepen income generation ventures among the congregation.

He said the church has some congregations that engaged in credit union activities but the level of participation in terms of the number of congregations was woefully inadequate. =93Yet by the day, members of the various congregations of the church approached the session to borrow money for school fees or rents or to start a business. Many a time, the church is unable to assist members with church funds=94, he said.

The Reverend Ernest Odame Asare Asante, presbytery clerk hoped participants would take the course seriously so that they would go back to share the ideas with members of their congregations. 04 Nov. 06