Government committed to job creation – NEIP CEO
| Updated Oct 20, 2017 at 4:49am
John Kuma, CEO NEIP.
The Chief Executive Officer, National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Plan (NEIP), John Kuma, has reiterated government’s commitment to creating jobs through the private sector.
He said government was aware that there was no space in the public sector for employment; hence its objective and focus was to help create businesses in the private sector.
“And that is how we hope to address the problem of unemployment,” Mr. Kuma said at the first Growing Business Together (GBT) start-up investor conference in Accra.
The conference was on the theme “Securing Investments for Startup and Early Stage Businesses”.
The conference was structured to bring start-ups/small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and various stakeholders in the startup and investment ecosystem together, with the objective to help their businesses and to generate deal flow for investors.
The startup investor conference is a collaborative effort by the Netherlands Embassy in Ghana and MBC Africa.
Mr. Kuma explained that it was for this reason that the government recently launched the NEIP to focus on private sector job creation, through business incubations, start-ups, acceleration programs, and provision of financial and technical assistance to people with business ideas and how they could help to scale them up to make sure that jobs were created for everybody.
“The NEIP focuses on innovation, entrepreneurship and integration,” he added.
The Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Ghana, Ron Strikker, said the entrepreneurship programme in general was the best example of the Holland-Ghana motto “Grow Together”.
“Entrepreneurship and the private sector play a major role, because they are the future of the economy of this country and it is very important that we start building on this now,” he said.
The Ambassador charged entrepreneurs to be dedicated and disciplined.
The Chief Executive Officer of MBC Africa, Tenemba Anna Samake, said the conference was a means to have a dialogue of all the ecosystem players so as to come up with good strategies and define ways and means to support financially, businesses that are coming out of all their incubators and accelerators in Ghana
She said the GBT was the fruit of a vision of two organisations; impact booster from the Netherlands and MBC Africa, to build a strong support network for young entrepreneurs, not only in Ghana, but young Ghanaians in Netherlands, who want to start their own companies in Ghana.
The Director of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) West-Africa, Shoala Safo-Duodu, said support networks were critical for young people because they play an extensive role in their lives.
She said they did not only provide support in the form of advice, regarding where to look for and how to find employment, skills development and business guidance, but are also instrumental in accessing financial resources that are needed.
“Since the inception of the YALI project in 2015, we have trained over 2,000 young people across nine West African countries and these young people had laudable ideas in agriculture, business, health and hospitality. But investors are few, although some of our trainees have received grants from USAID and other international organisations,” she said.
Mrs. Safo-Duodu urged Ghanaian investors and organisations to believe in our young entrepreneurs and not only offer them the support network that was needed, but the financial capacity to grow their ideas into businesses and enterprises and also employ other young people.