Chief Executive Officer of the Chamber of Young Entrepreneurs, Sherif Ghali, has welcomed the YouStart initiative proposed by government in the budget 2022 reading to provide one million jobs for the youth in the country.
According to him, government has gotten it right in supporting young entrepreneurs with the YouStart initiative. Mr Ghali insisted that the move significantly caters to the needs of the teeming entrepreneurs in the country.
“It is something that we have taken a look at as a Chamber and it reflects our inputs and our call for support for young entrepreneurs. So, that really seats well and we can say that… it’s something that we are in for and we’re glad that finally we have an initiative like this. Now, we will be talking about the implementation and how exactly we are going to make sure this works”.Mr Sherif Ghali
Commenting on the access to funding for beneficiaries of the YouStart initiative as espoused by the finance minister, Mr Ghali noted that the scope of funding for businesses is exactly what the Chamber seeks and expressed excitement over the structure put in place to issue disbursement of funds to these start-ups.
“The minister has indicated that one million funds for each year for three years, that’s exactly what they’re going to do. I kind of like how it’s being segregated. We have the district level loans, we have the start-up loans, we have the SME support to the banks that will empower them to be able to give loans. So, yes, this one, I say they really got it right and it’s as how we want it to be. What we should be talking about is how the implementation should be done and that is what the Chamber has to say”.Mr Sherif Ghali
E-levy should be incremental
Touching on the e-levy and how entrepreneurs are responding to it, Mr Ghali noted that about “fifty percent” of his members do not consider it as an “issue” because the Chamber needs to find a way of “supporting” government to aid entrepreneurs.
As it stands now, the Chamber of Young Entrepreneurs CEO stated that although it is not against the levy, neither are they for it, they reckon the implementation of the levy should be “incremental” and not slapped on persons at a go.
Mr Ghali explained that the e-levy is “directly targeted” at the young people since they are the ultimate users of “mobile money” and other electronic mode of payment than any other person.
Most of the big industries, according to Mr Ghali, use their cheque books and are not as heavily impacted by the e-levy as the youth start-up companies are. He indicated that although it is going to have an effect on entrepreneurs, the Chamber does not only propose support for its members alone but also look at how members can support the “development of our nation”.
Following this, he noted that if the government is willing to part with 1 million every year to support entrepreneurs and allow them access credit, then there is nothing wrong with members of the Chamber parting with something to support government by way of e-levy.