Twenty-six thousand entrepreneurs are expected to be trained under the third window of the Presidential Business Support Programme (PBSP), according to the Ministry of Business Development.
In collaboration with the National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Plan (NEIP), the Minister, Dr. Ibrahim Awal, announced the opening of the window three programme saying the NEIP application portals are opened today to receive applications from all the 260 districts of Ghana from young entrepreneurs below age 35.
The Presidential Business Support Programme is aimed at curbing unemployment – especially among the youth – through training and funding. The third window is expected to last for two-months.
According to Dr. Awal, the programme will build the capacity of 26,000 startups across the country out of which 5,000 of them would be selected to receive loans ranging from GH¢5,000 to GH¢50,000 with 10% interest annually to scale up their businesses.
Giving a breakdown on the first and second windows of the Presidential Business Support Programme, Dr. Awal said under windows one and two, 19,000 startups were trained and over 90,000 jobs created.
“Out of which 3,000 of them received seed fund ranging from GH¢10,000 to GH¢100,000. The objective is to build their resilience, create jobs and make them job owners and not seekers. “We are therefore going to support 5,000 of them spread across all sectors across the country with GH¢50 million of funding with very marginal interest,” he said.
On his part, the CEO of the NEIP, John Kumah, explained that the training comes with a mandatory three-year mentorship programme which has built the capacity of their businesses at a 75% recovery rate. “We will be training 100 beneficiaries from each district and we believe that by the time we finish the process, we would have trained 26,000 startups across the country.”
Mr. Kumah emphasized that the funds that are recovered are usually reloaded back into the system for other cohorts of the next batches to benefit. He said there is the need to enforce the culture of repayment to young entrepreneurs because it builds their capacity to spend within their budget.
Touching on access to the application portal by rural entrepreneurs who lack access to internet services, he said the NEIP has decentralized the process for individuals in rural Ghana and letters have been sent to every district assembly in Ghana to enable every interested entrepreneur access to application and training process.
Explaining the transparency of the selection process, the NEIP boss noted that anyone who applies qualifies for training and these are done by partners and hubs who have the qualifications to do the trainings.
He said the partners and hubs select top 10 businesses from the lot and are sent to the NEIP office for monitoring, evaluation and confirmation. All interested persons are encouraged to apply on the official website of the NEIP www.neip.gov.gh or @neipGhana on all social media platforms for more information.