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500 Start-Ups To Receive NEIP Support In First Year - CEO
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The National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Plan (NEIP), a government’s flagship initiative which will be the primary vehicle for providing an integrated, national support for start-ups and small businesses, has pledged to assist over 500 young business-thirsty people across the country.

The NEIP, as part of its mandate, will help these young business-thirsty people draft business plans that can see them through securing loans at prevailing Treasury bill rates for the establishment of their business entities.

The move is to create the enabling environment for unemployed graduates to realise their dreams of becoming entrepreneurs.

It is also the target for NEIP to create more jobs for the teeming unemployed youth across the country.

Chief Executive Officer of NEIP, John Kumah made this known during a press conference in Accra yesterday to call for application for prospective applicants or businesses to enter application for the NEIP Business Support Programme.

He stated that applications period will be between November 2, 2017 and December 3, 2017, cautioning that late applications will not be considered.

All applicants, he directed, are requested to complete a detailed application form at www.neip.gov.gh, and the application can be submitted online or printable form, which can be scanned and submitted via [email protected]

He added that applicants are requested to submit duly filled application for the stage one of the application process.

John Kumah pointed out that this year’s application is the first call, and applicants who are unable to apply for the first call will have a second chance in 2018.

He emphasised that application forms are free and prospective applicants should not allow anybody to take money from them.

NEIP, according to him, exists to enable new businesses to emerge and give them the space to grow, to receive financing and business development services, to secure orders during the critical formative years, and to tap into a wide supply chain and network for their growth years, helping to create jobs at a widely distributed national level.

The current NPP government, he noted, have a firm conviction that the way out of the graduate unemployment and teeming youth unemployment is entrepreneurship and innovation, and NEIP has, therefore, come as a solution to this national youth unemployment challenge.

He said the NEIP is, therefore, set within the context of Ghana’s long-term strategic vision of consolidating its middle-income status, building an industry-driven economy capable of providing decent jobs that are suitable and sustainable for development.

Kumah disclosed that the Ministry of Business Development, together with the leadership of NEIP, over the past six months have been working around the clock to fashion out the best implementing policies to ensure a sustainable growth for the entrepreneurship ecosystem in Ghana.

NEIP, he stated, exists not just to provide funding for businesses, but is also the enabler for the entrepreneurship ecosystem in Ghana. 

“We are currently positioning ourselves to bring all the various actors like funding organisations, infrastructural support institutions, incubators and accelerators, government agencies, networks and international organisations to create the right enabling environment for start-ups and small businesses to thrive,” he noted.

“Our government believes that a private sector-led approach is best to achieve the desired result for the growth of the economy. In this regard, a Private Sector Implementation Partner (PSIP) has been engaged through a competitive tender process, who, after the selection, have been working with us to build a strong support for the entrepreneurship ecosystem in Ghana.”

In a related development, NEIP launched National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Week to carry programmes such as ‘The African case clearing house’, ‘Let’s go digital’, ‘The SME club’, ‘The one competition’, among others.

Yaw Asamoah, Executive Director of African SME, the Private Sector Implementation Partner (PSIP) for NEIP, who launched the week, stated that: “Our approach to entrepreneurship and innovation is by building a solid business ecosystem which is viable and can feed of itself.

“We intend rolling out several programmes and projects to make the doing of business in Ghana easier. We will set up co-working, incubation and accelerator spaces across the country, and this will be called job station. Job Station because it will be the place where we will groom future entrepreneurs and innovators to create new jobs and propel our nation,” he asserted.

NEIP was launched by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in July this year with a seed capital of US$10 million, which is expected to be scaled up to $100 million through the Private Sector Implementation Partner (PSIP).
Source: The Finder

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