By Bernice Bessey
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Private Enterprise Federation (PEF), Nana Osei- Bonsu, says the Federation has targeted to partner and build the capacities of 10 local businesses to have them listed on the Ghana Stock Exchange.
The PEF would only be working with businesses interested and willing meet the requirements of the stock market.
This, he said: “We will train them and build their capacity so that they meet the requirements. And, our object is to, at least, have about 10 of these companies that we can work with across board – from agriculture to manufacturing and to services.”
He, however, warned that any company unwilling to share it stake would not qualify for the enlistment, because the requirements are mandatory. “So if you do not won’t share, and do not want to do all the things that are required, obviously, I cannot reinvent the wheel.”
Speaking at a training workshop on business development for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) held in Accra last week.
He said the Federation, in 2012, secured US$1.5 million finding from the Africa Development Bank to do various things, including developing a web-based platform that would house business information, enable access to research, and showcase the profile of individual businesses.
So far, the website had been developed at the cost of $700,000 and to organise training for businesses that need capacity on corporate governance, taxation, marketing, how to write a business plan and other businesses related matters.
After the programme, he said the PEF will follow up with monitoring and evaluation of how businesses are implementing what they learnt throughout the workshop.
Furthermore, there would be a ‘Virtual Remote Control’ for individuals at their comfort who could sign up and access various business promotions activities, training programmes and capacity building that one can take advantage of to improve his or her business.
Nana Osei-Bonsu added that one major issue they are holding talks with the government on, was the cost of doing business in the country, saying that it was one thing to have the capacity to run, and another to operate in an environment where interest rates and taxes are high.
According to him, high rate of interest and taxes are some of the things the Federation had been advocating with the government to make sure that taxes are reduced, and the cost of doing business, regarding to money, interest rates are lowered.
He also said the review of the utility tariff on energy was good and a move in the right direction but urged consumers to be mindful of conservation of power, which is critical to businesses.
“If you abuse it, then you are going to pay some more. The point is it is in the right direction, but we have to also conserve the use of energy so that business can improve,” the PEF CEO advised.
Kwabena Dankyi Daffour, on behalf of the Minister for Business Development, also said the structure of businesses in the country is like a pyramid, which has the top occupied by a few foreign companies, the centre empty, and the base choked with indigenous businesses.
He explained that this was so, because businesses are unwilling to form strong partnerships to increase their advantage to grow and survive competitions.