Tasked with the mandate to distribute the GH₵600million stimulus package to MSMEs in the country, the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI) has decried the lack of adequate data from several micro, small and medium-sized enterprises to access the loan.
We are happy that the NBSSI is resolved to solve that problem, and has consequently distributed 70 laptops and printers to its member-associations to enhance their ability to gather and update data of its members.
The computers are also to help the association assist its members to apply for the loans and track the progress of their applications.
Executive Director of NBSSI, Kosi Yankey-Aryeh, had cause to complain when she observed that the reason why we gave them this is that the majority of associations were not able to bring proper data on their members and where they are located.
“This brought a lot of challenges when it came to working with associations to disburse the money.” Last week, the NBSSI began the disbursement of GH¢1million to 1,000 applicants under the first tranche of the GH¢1 billion Coronavirus Alleviation Programme (CAP) business support scheme.
We believe this presents a perfect opportunity to formalise the informal sector, and the NBSSI can be the vehicle that achieves this objective since it will oversee disbursement of the stimulus package and keep a proper database on all Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in the country.
The criteria required to access the stimulus package requires documentation and honouring tax obligations among others, and the Trades Union Congress (TUC) sees this a starting point to formalise the informal economy by creating the needed database.
The distribution of laptops and printers is a step in the right direction by the NBSSI to ensure that MSMEs keep proper records, as this has been one of the handicaps causing SMEs to be denied access to credit because they lack proper book-keeping.
The NBSSI has traditionally offered refresher courses for many MSMEs to sharpen their book-keeping skills.