GUTA wants stimulus package increased to GHc1.8 billion

The Ghana Union of Traders (GUTA) has raised concerns over the GHc600 million stimulus package which the government has allocated for small scale industries.

GUTA is of the view that the allocation would be woefully inadequate for the expected beneficiaries are 200,000 as announced by the board for small scale industries.

The union is also accusing the National Board for Small Scale Industries of hijacking the process and berated plot to sideline the real beneficiaries – the Trade Associations in the distribution process.

National Oragnizer of GUTA Mr. Clement Boateng in an interview with Kwabena Agyapong on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm said they would want the government to increase the amount to Ghc1.8 billion.

He explained if the amount is kept at GHc600 million, each beneficiary would only get GHc3,000, an amount he lamented is woefully inadequate.

The government is rolling out a soft loan scheme of six hundred million cedis (GH¢600 million), in this month of May, to support micro, small and medium scale businesses to support businesses in the face of the coronavirus challenge.

More than 200,000 Micro, small and medium Enterprises are expected to benefit from the GH¢600 million COVID-19 Alleviation Programme (CAP) Business Support Scheme.

The Executive Director NBSSI, Mrs Kosi Yankey-Ayeh, announced this at a briefing at the Ministry of Information, last week Thursday.

She said about 80 per cent of the businesses are in the micro category.

To ensure the success, efficiency and transparency of the programme, an online portal had been developed to be approved by the Board of Directors, and it would be stress-tested by independent consultants to ensure that all implementation challenges were minimised and tested, she noted

“We will also create the opportunity for those who are not technology savvy or have limited access in remote districts to have access to partake in the business support scheme,” she said.

“We believe that we are in the position to operationalise the service soon. We also will be communicating to the general public as of today to get them ready to prepare,” Mrs Yankey-Ayeh added.

But GUTA also wants broader stakeholder consultation on the utilisation of the GHS600 million soft loan scheme.

They have also cast doubt on the 200,000 figure put out by the NBSSI.

By: Rashid Obodai Provencal

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