Microfinance Expert, Ishmael Okyere is attributing the continuous collapse of many Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to the lack of capacity in financial management and operations among players in the sector.
Speaking in a radio interview, the Microfinance Expert also blamed the malfunctioning and collapse of SMEs on the lack of entrepreneurial knowledge and management practices, prevailing economic conditions, low reinvestment or capital injection and lavish spending by some SMEs. The interview centered on the funding of SMEs as a government initiative towards job creation to reduce unemployment.
Ishmael Okyere frowned on the refusal of many beneficiaries of the Micro and Small Loans Scheme (MASLOC) instituted by government to support Ghanaians as a means to reducing poverty, to repay their loans.
The funding and sustenance of MSMEs represents a major function of the general business finance market in which capital for different types of firms are supplied, acquired and costed or priced. Yet, the issue of funding of these businesses to boost production for profit has been a major source of concern to finance sector players. The inability of Many MSMEs in the form of bank loans and overdrafts, leasing and hire-purchase arrangements, equity and corporate bond issues, venture capital or private equity and asset finance, among others, continue to threaten the survival of many small businesses in the country.
A study conducted by Bastiat Ghana, a liberal economy think tank, shows that 92 percent of registered businesses in Ghana are Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises with 85 percent of them offering employment in the manufacturing sector while 75 percent of them contribute to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Ishmael Okyere also sees the absence of discipline in financial management, ineffective succession plans negative worker attitudes as responsible for the malfunctioning and collapse many of the countries MSMEs.
He is worried that though many sector players find access to some credit from financial institutions, they lacked well-defined business plans and financial consciousness to work effectively and plough back profit. He is advocating the setting up of an independent office that will be charged to conduct effective monitoring and provide administrative support in carrying out market research to identify targeted customers by MSMEs in order to boost the provision of goods and services.
When reached for his views on the topic, Hon. Quarcu Jantuah Boateng Dadson, Deputy Director of the Youth Enterprise Support enumerated several governmental interventions towards the establishment and sustenance of MSMEs in the country. He explained that government is presently funding the establishment and maintenance of several MSMEs as a measure to reduce youth unemployment. “Several Ghanaian Youth who submitted well defined business plans have been supported with business management ethics and governmental finance from the Youth Enterprise Support Secretariat and we are poised to do more”, he said.