The United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) through the Boosting Green Employment and Enterprise Opportunities in Ghana (GrEEn) project, has supported 7,258 underserved people from Ashanti and Western regions with access to tailored digital financial services.
Under the project, almost 4,000 young entrepreneurs have access to a digital bookkeeping App that was helping them with their business performance and increasing their access to finance through a credit scoring tool.
Madam Arianna Gaspari, Financial Inclusion Speciality, UNCDF, said this when the organisation hosted a delegation from Zambia in Accra.
The Zambian delegation visit was to learn best practices and better understand how Ghana’s digital financial services providers and utility providers have successfully rolled out digitalized payments for utilities that have transformed Ghana’s economic landscape.
She said the UNCDF had collaborated with the Fidelity Bank Ghana to engaged in financial inclusion and Viamo, a global social enterprise improving lives via mobile, under the GrEEn Project to increase access and usage of financial services for youth, women and returning migrants in the Ashanti and Western regions of Ghana.
She stated that 430 vulnerable entrepreneurs have accessed loans for a value of almost 400,000 dollars through the innovative crowdlending platforms and mobilized 12,000 dollars on formal digital savings accounts from remote areas since March 2021.
She said the beneficiaries would soon have access to tailored financial and digital literacy through IVR channels to reach the last mile as well as remittance-linked services such as savings and insurance products.
The GrEEn is a four-year action from the European Union, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Ghana, UNCDF and SNV.
The project aims at creating greater economic and employment opportunities for youth, women and returning migrants by promoting and supporting sustainable, green businesses in selected regions, to be precise the Ashanti and Western regions.
GrEEn is implemented under the European Union Emergency Trust Fund for Africa.
Madam Gaspari said the GrEEn project would contribute to addressing the root causes of irregular migration by supporting sustainable and climate resilient local economies, green jobs and development in regions of departure, transit and return.
The objective, she said was to create local financial ecosystems that facilitate the development of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises and enable the transition of local economies to green and climate resilient development.
She said the UNCDF under its Inclusive Digital Economy Scorecard had provided an overall score for the development of a digital economy based on various indicators for the main components of a digital economy- policy and regulation, infrastructure and innovation and skills.
Mr Charles Abani, UN Resident Coordinator in Ghana, said such exchanges helped to explore new ideas and impact it to the country, stressing that Africa must rise up and take its rightful place to development.
He said COVID-19 had taught the world about the importance of digitization and the need to maximize its benefits, and commended Ghana for its digitization agenda.
He said the UN had allocated huge sums of money for countries to apply for the fund to help in the recovery plan of the COVID-19 pandemic.