Alhaji Mohammed Awal, Minister for Business Development
Minister for Business Development Alhaji Mohammed Awal has indicated that the New Patriotic Party (NPP) administration will introduce a one-year tax exemption scheme for Small and Medium-scale Enterprises (SMEs) across the country.
The scheme, which is expected to begin in either July or August, this year, is to help support the growth of SMEs, he added.
Mr. Awal made this known on Friday when he visited Horizons Offices at One Airport Square, one of successful collaborations between Ghana and Kenya in Accra.
The minister highlighted policy interventions that the government was making to ensure the growth of businesses in the country and the African continent in general.
Government, he said, was committed to encouraging many start-ups in Ghana to help create jobs and improve the livelihoods of the masses.
“For one year, they (start-ups) will not pay taxes; once they don’t pay the taxes, they can plough back this money and expand their businesses, we need to make young businesses grow.”
The minister said government would this year commence a special training programme for about 1,000 university graduates who will be sent to various parts of the country after acquiring the necessary skills to help educate small and medium enterprises owners on book-keeping, accounting, among others, to ensure the proper management of their businesses.
Government is also in the process of launching a National Entrepreneurship Innovation Plan (NEIP) that will help businesses secure markets during their very formative stages and to help them in the wide supply chain and network, Mr. Awal disclosed.
Support For Distressed Firms
A GHC100 million National Industrial Revitalization Programme under which there will be a stimulus package for distressed companies, as well as, existing ones would also be introduced, he said.
The aim is to ensure that companies that were distressed over the last three to four years due to the erratic power supply, popularly known as dumsor experienced by Ghana, will be helped to come back in business and provide additional jobs.
The minister noted that urgent steps ought to be taken to address the current poor trade volumes on the continent.
He indicated that trade between Ghana and Kenya was not encouraging due to some obstacles, stressing that both countries must work to eliminate these.
Mr. Awal urged both Ghanaian and Kenyan businesses to take advantage of the upcoming Kenya Trade Expo Ghana 2017 slated from 1-4 November at the Labadi Beach Hotel in Accra.
Acting Chairman of the Kenyan Community in Ghana, Albert Ngumba, in a remark, said Kenyans in Ghana have ventured into banking and finance, agriculture, communication and advertising, among others.
Horizons Offices is a Pan-African serviced office provider established in Kenya in 2009.
It now has about five business centers in three African business hubs namely Nairobi, Lagos and Accra.
By Melvin Tarlue