The government today gave yet another major boost to its quest to promote youth entrepreneurship.
This was when Vice President Dr. Bawumia gave a whopping amount of GHc100 million to beneficiaries of its YouStart Programme.
This came through the Ghana Jobs and Skills Project (GJSP) and the Ghana Economic Transformation Project (GETP) to over 30,000 beneficiaries.
The GJSP and GETP projects were funded by the World Bank through the ministries of Finance and Trade and Industry as part of measures to cushion startups and enterprises adversely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
At a signing ceremony in Accra today, Vice President Bawumia said the Akufo-Addo-led government has created 2.1 million jobs within the period of seven years since taking over the reins of governance despite the global economic meltdown created by the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine war.
The Vice President noted that over 30,000 young persons and MSMEs had already received between four to five days of Business Management Training.
He said the initiatives were ongoing efforts by the government to create an entrepreneurial economy and turn ideas into tangible results.
In September 2023, he said, the Government through the Ghana Enterprises Agency approved over GHS35 Million to 272 MSMEs under various components of the Ghana Economic Transformation Project (GETP).
Also, between September 2021 to August 2022, government was said to have supported over 780 firms with grant funding of over GHc65 Million also under the GETP.
Apart from that, he said there is a special grant package designed to support and empower Persons with disabilities (PWDs) and that more entrepreneurs and startups would receive grant funding in 2024 under the YouStart initiative.
“By the end of these two Projects, the government will have supported more than 50,000 startups and MSMEs with technical and financial support through the Ghana Enterprises Agency.
“This grant funding is not just a monetary transaction; it is an investment in the dreams, aspirations, and potential of the youth,” Dr Bawumia added.
Instead, he indicated that “it is a signal that shows the youth of this great nation that ‘it is possible’” and that “through strategic partnerships and targeted interventions, we are creating an environment of possibilities where ideas flourish, businesses thrive, and individuals find the means to unleash their potential.”
That, he said, “is surely the complementary pathway to nurture and reap the demographic dividend of having a youthful population” insisting “the YouStart Ghana Jobs and Skills Project stands as a beacon of hope and opportunity for the youth of our dear nation.”
His reason was that “the synergy between capacity-building and grant funding as envisioned in the YouStart Ghana Jobs and Skills Project (GJSP) and the GETP, shows the government’s commitment to comprehensive and holistic enterprise development.”
Ken Ofori-Atta, the Minister of Finance, said the government has allocated GHc 200 million in 2024 Budget to support the programmes and soliciting $200 million from the World Bank to ensure continuous support and their sustainability.
He expressed government’s unwavering commitment to create a conductive environment for businesses to thrive and ensure that the youth, which constituted 75 percent of the population turn their ideas into tangible results.
By Charles Takyi-Boadu, Presidential Correspondent