African Partner Pool supports businesses to expand supply base

The Africa Partner Pool (APP) is looking to increase opportunities for local businesses to market their products and services to a wider market.

The private sector initiative by Invest in Africa brings together leading companies across sectors to develop local enterprise and support investment in Ghana.

The pool of buyers comprises about 90 percent of international and multinational companies.

However some local industries, like oil and gas, demand high technical capacity to meet the supply needs of companies within the pool.

With a one million dollar grant from the African Development Bank (AfDB), the initiative is supporting the competence development of local supplies. This is to encourage the buyers to seek solutions locally.

APP Manager, Ben Manu tells Luv Biz it is cost effective for multinational companies to source solutions locally.

“When you source abroad, it’s expensive; the goods or the materials you need to supply that service you need to import; the human resource you need to deploy these goods, you need to also import and that’s expensive,” he said.

There are currently ten commercial buyers who on regular basis put up tenders and notices on the partner pool to attract the registered 310 supplies who can meet the requirements for the supply of the goods and services.

Mr. Manu says there are plans to expand the buyer-supplier base.

“The vision by end of next year is to grow the number of buyers to 20 so ten more and we’re doing that because we want to improve the opportunities that this local supplier base can have… and the suppliers we’re also seeking to grow them by 1,000 to give the buyers options to find, in a competitive way, suppliers that can meet their demand”.

Businesses in the Ashanti and Brong Ahafo regions have been engaged to tap into the opportunity.

President of the Association of Ghana Industries, James Asare-Adjei, reiterated the resolve of the Association to support members survive in the face of the challenges in operations.

“Irrespective of the challenges and the problems, one thing that the entrepreneur knows how to do best is to survive in the face of challenges,” he expressed. “We are there as a leading private sector advocacy group to support you and that is why the APP project comes in handy”.

The power crisis, high cost of borrowing and depreciation of the cedi against other foreign currencies are major challenges confronting local businesses.

Story by Kofi Adu Domfeh

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