Political Parties should put Small & Medium Business high on Agenda as Ghana votes


JOHANNESBURG20161117164841, South Africa, December 5, 2016/ — The party that emerges as the winner of Ghana’s general election, to be held on 7 December, should seize the opportunity to drive economic growth by creating policies and a legislative environment where business builders can thrive.

That’s according to Magnus Nmonwu (https://Twitter.com/MNmonwu), Regional Director forSage in West Africa (www.SageAfrica.com), the market and technology leader for integrated accounting, HR & payroll, and payment systems. He says that improving the ease of doing business as well as setting sound macro-economic policies would help to generate GDP growth for the Ghanaian economy. Small & Medium Businesses are an engine for job and wealth creation in several growing economies around the world.

Business-friendly environment 
Says Nmonwu: “Ghana has been an exemplary democracy for the past two decades and made some impressive progress in reducing poverty during the last commodities boom. With its sound legal system and a regulatory environment that gives businesses stability, it is one of the most business-friendly countries in sub Saharan Africa.”

“We believe that the time is now ripe for the government to collaborate more closely with the private sector on ways to create jobs and raise income levels. With an estimated 90% of businesses in Ghana being Small & Medium Businesses (http://APO.af/xamu4J), this sector generates and drives much of Ghana’s income and employment. Supporting it can rekindle economic growth for the country.”

Nmonwu says that one of Ghana’s most significant economic opportunities lies in diversifying its economic base and boosting exports. Government can support these opportunities through targeted investments in infrastructure, education and vocational training, and small business financing. “We have seen some interesting initiatives in recent years,” he adds.

Financing remains a challenge
“For example, the launch of the Ghana EXIM (Export Import) Bank (http://EXIMBankGhana.com) addresses the need for financing if business builders in the country are to grow the small business sector and exports. Financing remains a challenge for many smaller Ghanaian companies, so providing them with low-interest loans is an intervention that will make a difference.”

Another area where focus could pay off is skills development, particularly with an emphasis on the science, technology, engineering and mathematics skills needed to boost the economy into the digital age and services economy. Ghana should also look at how investments in roads, power and telecoms – in partnership with the private sector – might drive growth by lifting productivity; it could also be a way to create opportunities for small businesses through procurement.

Modernising government IT  
Modernising the government’s ICT system is another opportunity, Nmonwu says. “By implementing the right accounting, payroll and citizen interaction systems, the government can improve efficiencies while showing its commitment to accountability and transparency,” he adds. “It can also use online technology to make it easier for entrepreneurs and individuals to interact with the government.”

“Entrepreneurship has the potential to power the economies in West African countries. It is entrepreneurs who are the drivers of prosperity, and it is in government’s interest to support them,” he says. “Business builders take risks to follow their dreams and pursue their passions, and they hold the key to West Africa’s prosperity.” 

About Sage:
Sage (www.Sage.com) is the market and technology leader for integrated accounting, payroll, and payment systems, supporting the ambition of entrepreneurs and business builders. Today, business builders measure success in strong relationships, partnerships, and communities. It‘s why Sage helps drive today’s business builders with the most intelligent and flexible cloud-enabled software, support, and advice to manage everything from money to people. Daily, more than 13,000 Sage colleagues in 23 countries work with a thriving global community of over 3 million entrepreneurs, business owners, tradespeople, accountants, partners, and developers to champion the success of business builders everywhere. And as a FTSE 100 business, we are passionate about doing business the right way, supporting our local communities through the Sage Foundation. 

Sage–the market and technology leader for integrated accounting, payroll, and payment systems, powered by the cloud and supporting the ambition of the world’s entrepreneurs and business builders. Because when business builders do well, we all do. 

For more information, visit www.Sage.com.