The Ghanaian government has put aside a total of 6.7-million euros to help finance the operations of funding-strained small and medium enterprises (SMEs), Accra-based weekly Graphic Business reported on Tuesday.
The grant will provide a cheaper source of funding for SMEs under the Ghana Private Sector Development Facility Project which is being supported by the Italian government, the newspaper said.
The government received a soft loan of 22-million euros from the Italian government, 10 million of which has been put aside for the SME sector, Graphic Business reported, quoting trade and industry minister Haruna Iddrisu.
Many SME owners have welcomed the good news, but fear that the grant might be politicised and only benefit businesses or people close to the ruling party.
“I hope that the people in charge of this grant won’t politicise it because everything in Ghana nowadays is built around having close ties with some influential people in power,” one SME owner told Moon of the South.
“My business is doing well, but I urgently need funding to move forward and expand the operations,” Happiness Acheampong said.
“But will I get a positive response if I were to apply, given that I didn’t vote for the ruling party, and I don’t know anybody at the top?” she wondered.
However, the newspaper said that companies that apply for funding must be fully fledged Ghanaian companies registered with the Registrar General’s Department, and also have sound accounting record and the ability to generate employment for the people.