Accra, April 02, GNA – The Private Enterprises Federation (PEF), a grouping of Private Businesses, has been rebranded and restructured in order to meet the needs of the private sector for more effective contribution to economic growth.
Known formerly as Private Enterprises Foundation, the Federation would work to expand its membership base providing attractive membership services, strengthen member associations through collaborative engagement and advocacy through services to their constituents, provide research and findings on issues of peculiar interest to them.
It would also collaborate with the insurance association to work out a scheme for affordable insurance coverage to individuals and businesses under PEF while working with financial institutions and some development partners to create a facility that would provide long term credit, guarantees and other forms of financing at discount rates to PEF members.
Nana Osei-Bonsu, Chief Executive Officer of PEF, said the role of the private sector had been guaranteed in the 1992 constitution and placed as ‘the engine of growth’ to play the lead role in national economic development.
He said various studies by development partners and World Bank has shown that the Private Sector was not performing well hence the need to bring together associations of businesses and groupings to work together and achieve a common goal.
Nana Osei- Bonsu said global competition, the unwillingness of public sector to relinquish business activities that could best be performed by the private sector and recurring budget deficits and ballooning government borrowings were crippling the private sector.
Other factors are high interest rates, deficient infrastructure, incessant power outages and water rationing.
He said PEF has been rebranded to meet the development needs of the private sector through advocacy for efficient allocation of the country’s resources, provision of requisite business development support services and capacity building for a sustainable private sector economic development.
He said PEF would also influence government policy direction for an improved and consistent investment climate and enabling environment for globally competitive and thriving private sector operations.
Mrs Elizabeth Villars, Former Chairperson of PEF, explained that PEF over the years had worked tirelessly to help government to initiate an enabling business environment for the private sector to operate.
Some of PEF’s advocacy programmes included a monthly meeting with the Vice President to discuss issues that pertained to private enterprises out of which the private enterprises commission was formed.
Nana Owusu-Afari, President of AGI, said that a change was important since it helps grow and adopt new practices.
Nii Ansah Adjei, Chief Director of the Ministry of Trade, who launched the Federation, said the Ministry had recognized the role of the private sector in efforts to support growth in the economy.
He said the new mandate of PEF would help strengthen it and to partner government in creating jobs, inclusive and sustainable development which would urge other business organizations to join.
Mr Kwaku Sakyi-Addo, Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Telecoms Chamber, said industries desperately needed energy to develop.
He said telecommunication companies had joined PEF because they believed that issues affecting their operations needed a collective approach and solutions.
Mr Lars Joker, a Representative from Danish Development Agency (DANIDA), was happy to support PEF in its transformation and cautioned members to always remember their primary responsibility.