An official of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) has told Xinhua that the government of Ghana needed to prioritize the development of the Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) sector as a catalyst for sustainable economic growth.
A project manager at the UNIDO Ghana office project manager for UNIDO Juan Pablo Dávila Sanchez said, to do this, the government must take steps to remove bottlenecks to the development of the sector.
“SME development is crucial for the economic development of a country, and there are many dimensions to it, but there is the need to ensure that the services that SMEs need to develop are available, “the UN official said.
In that regard, the official stated, for example, the need for quality assurance services such as the availability of testing laboratories for product testing in-country, so that SMEs would not incur additional cost testing products overseas.
The government also has to prioritize financial services for investment, so that SMEs have credit available to improve and increase the production and the quality: Access to training; access to information, and access to programs that can bring them together, like in cluster developments, added the official.
Sanchez continued that government and other stakeholders should exploit youth unemployment through targeted employment and specialized training programs to build the capacity of those unemployed people to serve as the human resource pool for SMEs.
“Training of the unemployed people needs to be improved, not only to bridge the capacity and knowledge gaps in the SME sector, but also to groom some as entrepreneurs-not to be employed, but to create businesses and jobs,” Sanchez added.
UNIDO, he said, supports host countries in these areas, especially in helping to improve quality and standards; in energy, and environment, working with donor countries and the host government in a tripartite arrangement. Enditem