Absa Bank Ghana and the Mastercard Foundation have sealed a partnership deal aimed at stimulating the growth of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to create access to 50,000 dignified and fulfilling jobs for young people in Ghana.
The partnership among others seeks to build the capacity of 5,000 MSMEs, especially women led firms, smallholder farmers, and players in the agribusiness value chain; strengthen MSME lending capability within the bank to build understanding and help improve quality of service to sector; and leverage digital technology to drive financial inclusion at scale and enable Absa Bank Ghana to provide financial and technical support to scale up promising Fintech start-ups while building their capability to help digitise the MSME space in Ghana.
The five-year partnership is part of the Mastercard Foundation’s Young Africa Works strategy in Ghana, an ambitious 10-year programme to enable three million young people, 70 per cent women, to access dignified and fulfilling work.
It also affirms Absa Bank’s commitment to connecting the dreams of enterprising Ghanaians to financial resources and opportunities to bring their possibilities to life.
Mrs Abena Osei-Poku, Managing Director, Absa Bank Ghana, reiterated the bank’s commitment to playing a shaping role in society through enterprise skills development initiatives designed to facilitate job creation and sustainable livelihoods for young people.
“We believe in connecting the dreams of our young entrepreneurs to financial opportunities to fuel their ambition and help scale up their businesses in a sustainable manner. Leveraging a high-value partnership such as this enables us to support young businesses to realise their aspirations,” Mrs Osei-Poku noted.
She said “We will continue to play a significant role in the micro, small, and medium enterprise sector to help create jobs as well as grow and transform our economy.”
As part of the partnership, Absa Bank Ghana will provide entrepreneurial and business sector-specific training. It will also facilitate lending at favourable interest rates to agribusinesses and women-led enterprises to enable them to scale and create access to dignified jobs for thousands of young people in Ghana.
“MSMEs are the bedrock of Ghana’s economy and they are currently the leading provider of employment for young people. Building capacity and providing affordable financing options and access to markets through digitisation will go a long way in creating sustainable jobs. Together we can enable the sector to become a major contributor to Ghana’s economic growth,” commented Nathalie Akon Gabala, Regional Head for Western, Central and Northern Africa at the Mastercard Foundation said.
BY TIMES REPORTER