IFC launches GFIP 2.0 to promote access to finance


By Buertey Francis BORYOR

The International Financial Corporation (IFC), in collaboration with the Bank of Ghana and the Office of the Registrar of Companies (ORC), has launched phase two of the Global Financial Infrastructure Program (GFIP 2.0) to promote access to finance for smaller enterprises, women-owned businesses and under-served individuals.

The programme aims to support the country’s credit reporting system to broaden its reach and coverage, strengthen the regulatory framework for movable asset financing and promote the introduction of innovative lending products to expand business financing options.

Additionally, it will aid in the implementation of legislation that defines how to support businesses in financial distress and recovery. The GFIP 2.0 programme is supported by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO).

Micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), which employ approximately 80 percent of the county’s workforce, face challenges in accessing finance due to various factors such as a lack of collateral, absence of formal credit profiles, and strict lending requirements imposed by banks.

Therefore, there is a critical need for a robust credit ecosystem to provide businesses with the necessary capital to survive, expand and contribute positively to the economy.

“Access to finance is a critical driver for business growth and innovation,” said Kyle Kelhofer, IFC Senior Country Manager for Ghana, Liberia and Sierra Leone. “With GFIP 2.0, IFC and our partners aim to bridge the financing gap for women-owned enterprises and underserved individuals, reinforcing our dedication to equality and prosperity for all.”

Simone Haeberli, Head of Cooperation at the Embassy of Switzerland to Ghana, Benin and Togo, also said: “The launch of the programme is yet another milestone in our global partnership with IFC; and by strengthening Ghana’s financial infrastructure, we are supporting MSMEs and ultimately a broader economic development in the country”.

In the last five years, the corporation and SECO have collaborated on a range of advisory programmes in the country, focused on facilitating access to finance for under-served populations and improving the country’s financial infrastructure.

IFC is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. As a member of the World Bank Group, the corporation works in more than 100 countries, providing financing and advisory services for private sector development.

In the last decade, it has brought close to US$2billion into the country’s economy through investments in sectors such as agribusiness, financial institutions, infrastructure, manufacturing, natural resources and tourism. Its efforts to promote sustainable cities is part of a larger World Bank Group initiative aimed at supporting policies and investments that are both resilient and forward-looking.

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