UNDP awards $70,000 grant to MSMEs 

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UNDP

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has awarded a total of 70,000 US dollars grant to 18 women and youth-led Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to grow their businesses. 

UNDPThis  falls under UNDP’s integrated MSMEs support programme aimed at improving the sustainability of these enterprises to advance job creation and economic growth.

Dr Angela Lusigi, the UNDP Resident Representative in Ghana, at the presentation of the awards, said the programme believed that supporting small businesses, particularly those owned by women and youth, was key to transforming the economy and unlocking the productivity of the informal sector.

The grant award, she said, forms part of a series of business development activities that close to 3000 participants had benefited over the past four years.

The participants of the integrated MSMEs support programme were drawn from six Metropolitan, Municipal, and District Assemblies (MMDAs) across Ghana.

They are Sagnerigu, Jomoro, Ketu South, Sefwi Wiawso, Kumasi, and Kassena-Nankana West districts.

Over the years, UNDP has disbursed over USD 500,000 through various challenges such as the Youth Innovation for Sustainable Development (YISD) challenge, the waste recovery platform, and COVID-19 innovation challenge.

The integrated MSMEs support programme included readiness support to those enterprises to leverage the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement to trade across borders.

It also enhances the capacity of MSMEs in good corporate governance, created awareness among the businesses to prevent radicalization, and provided energy and resource efficiency support.

Dr Lusigi noted that under a current District Innovation Challenge rolled out by UNDP in partnership with Absa Bank Ghana and Empretec Ghana, 300 businesses received training, coaching, and mentorship support on best business practices.

As part of the partnership, Absa Bank Ghana would grant access to loans for interested entrepreneurs out of the 300 MSMEs that participated in the District Innovation Challenge at low-interest rates, she said.

Ms Esther Nyamekeh, a Fashion Designer from Jomoro and beneficiary of the Grant, explained that she trained physically challenged persons to sew adding that the business development training had enabled  her to register her business.

She pledged to invest the funds into machinery to train more physically challenged persons to improve their living conditions.

By Florence Afriyie Mensah, GNA

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