Mr Alan Kyerematen, Minister for Trade has encouraged members of the Ghana Union of Traders’ Association (GUTA) to help increase patronage of locally produced goods by curbing the importation of similar products.
He said indigenous producers were losing the local market to offshore companies, which required the bold intervention of GUTA and government to collectively reverse the trend to spearhead investment and economic growth.
Mr Kyerematen was speaking at the commissioning of a newly constructed Business Resource Centre (BRC) at Fosu in the Assin Central Municipality of the Central Region.
The Business Resource Centre initiative is in line with the Government‘s national industrialization and business growth agenda to redirect the country’s economic capacity from consumption to production and investments.
Funding for the project was sourced from the African Development Bank and the International Fund for Agricultural Development.
The facilities will provide a one-stop enterprise support centre at the district level with a broad range of Business Development Services (BDS) to potential and existing entrepreneurs and enterprises.
The centres, the minister explained, would also become decentralised service point for banks and insurance companies concerned with providing financial support for small businesses.
To ensure that the centre was effective in providing technical support to small businesses, Mr. Kyerematen said a pool of experts and consultants on various fields were on hand to assist the BRCs to undertake their mandate.
That will significantly give strong backing to indigenous businesses to enable them to grow into giant industries to compete favorably globally.
Mr Kyerematen repeated government’s resolve to deal with the unemployment situation in the country, adding that his outfit together with other stakeholders were working to equip more youth to gain employable skills to themselves.
“President Akufo-Addo is committed to making sure that the country is industrialized under his leadership.
In a developing country like ours, there should be some form of support for the private sector and this should not only be based in Accra, the reason for the establishment of the centres in the districts to support ideas,” he said.
Mr Kyerematen noted that four districts in the Central Region benefited from the 67 business resource centres built across the country.
Mr Kwasi Arthur-Antwi, National Director for Rural Enterprises Programme, said the BRC were fully furnished and designed to support the initiative.
“The total cost of each BRC is about GHC 3 million and is fully furnished. We, therefore, ask that those charged with the responsibility of its maintenance do so to last to serve the purpose for which they are built,” the National Director said.