The Minister for Business Development, Dr. Ibrahim Mohammed Awal has admonished businesses in the country to support government’s entrepreneurial drive to create space and chances for the youth in the job market.
Speaking at the centenary celebration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Ghana, the Minister said supporting government’s vision will help bridge the unemployment gap in the country through the creation of jobs.
According to him, the Akufo-Addo-led government will continue to create an environment for businesses to grow but cannot be feasible enough a vision if the private is not well involved.
Business Development Minister earlier hinted government’s plan to train about 12,000 young people for start-ups and businesses to improve the microeconomic stability of the country.
Reiterating his stance on government’s entrepreneurial drive, Dr. Awal said GHC50 to GHC100 million would be spent on the project to help the youth prepare for their businesses before the Continental Free Trade Area begins in Africa.
According to him, government is committed to industrialising the economy, reason they are investing in the youth and want the private sector to support their goal.
“As government we will continue to create the environment for private sector to grow...We have a five point agenda as government. We want to industrialise the country, we want to modernise agriculture, we want to improve upon the infrastructure of the country; roads, railway, IT system, education and more importantly we want to build a human resource...There are so many investments for a country to do than to invest in its human resource because they are preparing them”.
“African countries have signed unto the Continental Free Trade Area creating 1.2bn population in Africa with over 3 trillion dollars trade per annum. The only way Ghana can tap into this Continental Free Trade Area is to prepare our people, prepare our businesses; that is why at the Ministry of Business Development we’re spending lots of money this year; 50 to 100 million cedis to train young people in entrepreneurship. And I want to urge businesses here to support government’s entrepreneurship drive so that we can equip young people”, he added.
The Minister further urged the Chief Executive Officers present at the event to build businesses that would be transgenerational and would grow and survive the test of time.
Explaining the rationale behind his statement, Dr. Awal said most businesses in the country collapse once the founder dies which isn’t a good indication for business growth.
“In Ghana, 75 percent of our businesses do not go beyond the founders; it’s not good. All the research has showed that only about 15 to 20 percent of businesses go beyond the founders. We need to grow generational businesses in this country. ICC let your experience, your discipline, your tenacity that’s brought you far to impact on business so that you go beyond”, he added.
He further advocated the need for ICC to outline policies and strategies that will help businesses owned by women grow and flourish.
He urged them to help women succeed as most businesses now established in the country are owned by women.
“We cannot build a prosperous economy without inclusiveness and I want you to deliberately help make women succeed. Less than 30 percent of women are on boards and executive positions in this country. It doesn’t engender well for business...Please have policies and programmes to build the capacity of our women to do business if we want to grow Ghana beyond where we are”, he said.
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