President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has charged State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) to be more efficient at their operations by cutting down waste so as to contribute a lot more to support economic growth, especially, at a time the country is putting in efforts to heal from the pandemic wounds.
According to him, the nation’s economic architecture would be less starved of revenue if SOEs were contributing meaningful dividends from their operations to the state.
Speaking at the State Interests and Governance Authority (SIGA) 2021 performance contract signing ceremony, the President said SOEs are not only critical to the Ghana Beyond Aid agenda but also would play an integral role in accelerating post-COVID-19 economic rebound.
The President noted that a number of policy reforms and enhancement measures have been put in place to support the operations of SOEs to make them profitable and resilient.
“The task is therefore for you to operate profitably and efficiently and by so doing, expand your scope of operation so that you could employ more people. I am hopeful that by the end of each fiscal year, every specified entity which has signed this compact with the government would be able to achieve these objectives,” President Akufo-Addo said.
He added that the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) who employ and contribute significant numbers to the economy need to be given some special attention by SOEs as stimulating them would lead to massive job creation.
“We must also be focused on your supply chain activities by involving Ghanaian entrepreneurs to spur the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises in order for more young people to be employed. If we can do this continuously for five years, imagine the number of lives we would impact,” he said.
He was excited about the news that many SOEs as a result of streamlining activities would be recording some profit this year: “I am encouraged to hear that most government entities would be posting profit this year and happy to learn that some will finally pay dividend to the state.”
Also speaking at the event, Minister for Public Enterprise, Joseph Cudjoe, said the theme for this year’s event: “Driving Implementation of Performance Enhancement Measures in SOEs and Public Corporations” summed up the focus of his work as Minister for Public Enterprises.
He recalled that during his vetting, he was asked about how he will seek to improve the employment situation in the country, and his response was that: “I have been tasked to ensure that public sector entities operate profitably and efficiently and, by so doing, this is going to expand their scope of operations to minimise unemployment.”
He added that, in keeping up with performance enhancement measures with SOEs, he, together with the Director- General of SIGA, are working on a comprehensive plan aimed at seeking strategic partnership for some Specified Entities.