Accra,– CapitalPlus Exchange (CapPlus) and the Mastercard Foundation have launched an industrywide collaboration with the Bank of Ghana and the Ghana Microfinance Institution Network (GHAMFIN) to lend to Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

The initiative is aimed at strengthening financial institutions so they could increase lending to MSMEs and create work opportunities for 60,000 young Ghanaian women and men.

It is tagged “Financial Institution Resilience and Strengthening (FIRST )” programme and expected to build the capacity of players within the financial sector, including savings and loans companies, rural and small business-focused banks, microfinance in addressing underlying challenges that inhibit their efforts at lending to MSMEs.

A statement issued in Accra and copied to the Ghana News Agency, said the programme formed part of the Mastercard Foundation’s Young Africa Works strategy aimed at enabling three million young people in Ghana to access dignified and fulfilling work opportunities.

It said in line with the Bank of Ghana’s efforts to strengthen the financial sector, financial institutions participating in the FIRST programme would receive technical assistance to expand their lending to small businesses and increase their attractiveness to investors.

The statement said it would also link the MSMEs to potential sources of capital and advance their digitisation, improve outreach, risk management, and efficiency.

“In addition to providing technical assistance to financial sector operators, FIRST has already attracted several impact investors, such as Oikocredit, a Dutch social investor, seeking to provide $20 million to financial sector partners that are committed to scaling finance to benefit youth and women in the agricultural value chain and other impact sectors,” it added.

The statement said, “The power of combining patient capital with technical assistance has always been our preferred approach, and we are delighted to combine forces with the Mastercard Foundation, GHAMFIN, and Oikocredit to contribute to a more resilient financial sector that provides greater opportunities for Ghana’s youth and women.”

lt said the partnership would enable them to support Ghanaian youth and women, while building assets and strengthening women-led businesses.

Source: Ghana News Agency

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