After sixteen (16) years of strengthening the advocacy capacity of private sector business groups and associations in Ghana, the Business Sector Advocacy Challenge (BUSAC) Fund programme closed in December 2020.
The Danish Ambassador to Ghana, Tom Nørring; the US Ambassador, Stephanie Sullivan will participate at an official closing ceremony scheduled for February 18, 2021, to deliver remarks.
Throughout the lifespan of the BUSAC Fund programme, the Fund provided over 1,100 business advocacy and business development services grants to the various private sector and farmer-based organisations in all regions of the country. Private Sector Organisations (PSOs) are now able to address constraints of the private sector backed with evidence-based arguments, and dialogue with the public sector to find solutions that enhance the business environment.
At the national level, the constructive dialogue between the private and public sector has led to the passage of several key policies and bills supported by the BUSAC Fund. These include the Engineering Council Act, 2011, the Companies Act, 2019 (Act 992), National Road Safety Authority Bill, MSME policy & Enterprise Ghana Agency bill, Tree Crop Development Authority Bill, the Corporate Restructuring and Insolvency Act, 2020 (Act 1015) and the Real Estate Agency Bill. The laws will help create a better business environment, which will invariably contribute to economic development.
At the district levels, players in the Agriculture sector have seen a transformation with the BUSAC Fund Programme. There is an increase in production following improved extension services, infrastructure, access to market, and an increase in export of non-traditional goods and commodities.
The Fund’s support for women and disadvantage groups has also led to better access to services and business opportunities. Notable among them are the Sunyani branch of Ghana Society of Physically Disabled who successfully advocated for their inclusion in the Government’s Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ) initiative. AE-ENBISE Women Association in the Bongo District of the Upper East Region successfully advocated for access to farmlands. As a result of the advocacy, about 5 hectares of land has been leased to the women for farming purposes. Altogether, about 200 women benefitted from the BUSAC support to AE-ENBISE Women Association.
Haven built the capacity of PSOs, beneficiaries of the BUSAC Fund programme are positioned to advocate government on issues relating to the private sector and find solutions to challenges that hamper business growth and development.
BUSAC Fund has been at the forefront of promoting business advocacy in Ghana and has come to be known to many Ghanaians as “The strongest voice of the private sector”. The Fund has made strides leading to greater participation of the private sector in governance processes and transparent regulatory functions.