Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Enterprises Agency (GEA), Mrs Kosi Yankey-Ayeh, has revealed that the Agency has disbursed over GHC500 million to support MSMEs during the pandemic.
According to her, the CAPBuSS initiated by government was the most successful intervention as the President came out with a bold ambition to support MSMEs by pledging GHC600 million to support businesses. She indicated that through the fund, the Agency was able to support and hold sturdy MSMEs in Ghana.
“We disbursed over GHC500 million in funding to Ghanaian MSMEs and we gave them a one year moratorium. So, the one year moratorium kicked off quite recently, so people have started paying in various capacities.”Kosi Yankey-Ayeh
Mrs Yankey-Ayeh highlighted that a lot of work went into trying to build back and support businesses and that’s what the funding did. She explained that the funding provided relief to these some 302, 000 businesses and the funds went out to them directly to use to strengthen their businesses and stabilize them.
“So, a lot of support went out through the CAPBuSS at that time. Now, where we’ve reached is the recovery stage because those were not free funds.”Kosi Yankey-Ayeh
Recoveries of funds from businesses
Commenting on the recoveries of the funds, Mrs Yankey-Ayeh noted that the agency is working on reconciliation of the funds from beneficiaries and currently have over GHC20 million plus. She stated that there isn’t a specific data on the exact amount the Agency has been able to retrieve because it hasn’t completed reconciliation but as much as possible, it is going around the country and ensuring that it starts receiving repayments.
“It’s also important to know that part of those funds, those who got their funds through the mobile money, Adom, was a grant component. That is not something we are going to go out and collect but that grant component went through the mobile money system because we knew that it was the best and efficient way to get to the beneficiaries. Those who got the fund through Adom were those who got up to GHC2, 000. So, about GHC200 million went out into that.”Kosi Yankey-Ayeh
The GEA boss revealed that although there is a perception out there that the funding for businesses at the time was free money, the Agency is doing its best to see how it can manage these recoveries and so far, people have the willingness to pay.
Additionally, she stated that the Agency is working with its participating financial institutions as it knew that a “time will come that we will have to recover and we didn’t have the entire capacity to do that alone”.
“We also wanted people to see it as a loan, not just from a government agency but through the participating financial institutions, we built a mechanism with them. So, the support with recoveries as well, we also came up with an app now where people can use that app to make payments, especially when they’re in remote areas where the participating financial institutions are too far away from them.”Kosi Yankey-Ayeh
Mrs Yankey-Ayeh stated that although the recovery of funds is not 100% guaranteed, it is important to continuously engage the beneficiaries and to also send them information, alert and engage them.
“So, we are trying as much as possible to get maximum recoveries out of that.”Kosi Yankey-Ayeh