Business News of Sunday, 29 January 2017
Famous Kwesi Atitsogbe, a journalist, formerly with the Multimedia Group was on Friday, 27 January adjudged the Best Financial and Economic Journalist at the third IFEJ Flamingo Awards.
Mr Atitsogbe, whose award was received on his behalf by his wife, also won the award for the Best in Tourism and Best in Microfinance/Rural Banking and SMEs.
As part of his award for the overall best Financial and Economic Journalist, Mr Atitsogbe would have the opportunity to attend the World Bank Spring meetings in Washington DC, USA and also receive an ipad, sponsored by the World Bank Group.
Speaking at the awards event organised by the Institute of Financial and Economic Journalist (IFEJ) at the Dubois centre in Accra, on the theme “Strengthening Micro Finance Institutions to enhance the growth of rural and micro enterprises”, Professor Ernest Aryeetey, a former Vice Chancellor of the University of Ghana stressed the need for Ghana to emulate countries like Sri Lanka and Kenya in the regulation of microfinance institutions.
He said regulation of the microfinance sector would be more workable when linked to larger financial institutions like banks, as practised in Sri Lanka and Kenya.
He said the microfinance business was a risky one and players needed partners, such as commercial banks to share those risks by linking with other initiatives such as education.
“Microfinance can make a difference but depends on how it is managed, structured and regulated.’
Mr Lloyd Evans, President of IFEJ, urged media practitioners to highlight and promote the activities of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in order to harness their potentials.
“SMEs, when well-developed, can fill the unemployment vacuum the country is currently saddled with,”he added.
Mr Evans announced that IFEJ would collaborate with the Africa Centre for Economic transformation to hold a series of training programmes for its members, among other initiatives.
Others winners at the awards are; Kwabena Adu Koranteng of New Crusading Guide – Best in Development and Extractive, Rebecca Adwoah Awuah of GBC 24 – Best Business/Manufacturing, Maxwell Akalaare Adombila of Graphic Business – Best in Agribusiness, Adnan Adams Mohammed of Economic Times – Best in Finance.
Mr Alhassan Andani, Managing Director of Stanbic Bank Ghana Limited, who chaired the event urged Journalists to be diligent in their work as a single mistake could create confusion.
He gave the assurance that banks in Ghana would be ready to partner serious microfinance institutions to help grow the sector.