As part of its institutional sustainability strategy, the International Labour Organisation (ILO), has organized a workshop in Accra aimed at aligning and embedding its Sustaining Competitive and Responsible Enterprises (SCORE) project in programmes of key BDS organisations in Ghana, to create synergies and sustain its delivery to SMEs.
Addressing participants, the Country Director of ILO, Vanessa Phala, said SCORE was launched in Ghana in 2011 as an ILO global programme with the aim to improve productivity and working conditions in local SMEs.
SCORE is a training intervention implemented in three phases, combining practical in-class training with in-factory/workplace coaching that demonstrates the best international practices in manufacturing and service sectors, and helping SMEs to participate in global supply chains.
She disclosed that in addition to the regular SCORE module, the ILO offers other modules such as Hospitality Coaching, Business Continuity Planning, and Gender Equality which are delivered through a well-designed cycle the results in the best of outcomes and experiences for enterprises.
For her part, the Deputy Executive Director of Ghana Enterprises Agency (GEA), Mrs. Anna Armo-Himbson advised owners of small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) to take advantage of its newly-launched COVID Recovery and Resilience Fund, known as the Nkosuo Program, which is intended to give financial support to businesses with up to 100 employees.
She announced that an official online portal has been opened from now till July 21, 2021, after which assessment of applicants will begin, followed by the disbursement of funds.
Mrs. Armo-Himbson explained that the GEA fund was set up primarily to support businesses within the Ghanaian informal sector to overcome setbacks suffered as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Deputy Minister for Employment and Labour Relations, Bright Wireko-Brobby, said the government is committed to partnering with stakeholders to work on how best to enhance SMEs by way of capacity to be more productive in the local economy.
He said Ghana’s informal sector currently employs more than 80% of the country’s workforce, and initiatives like the SCORE project and training programme will contribute positively to creating awareness among SMEs to boost resilience post-COVID-19.