Thirty-seven out of 67 business resource centres (BRCs) being set up by the government to provide business advisory services in various districts have been completed and are operating.
Work on the remaining 30 would be completed for operations to commence by the end of October this year, Minister of Trade and Industry, Alan Kyerematen, has stated.
He said the centres, costing GH¢3-million per one and jointly funded by the government and the African Development Bank (AfDB), were expected to serve as one-stop support unit for businesses and enterprises as well as decentralised offices of business regulatory agencies.
The Minister said this when he commissioned BRCs Mankroso in the Ahafo Ano South West District, Ejisu in the Municipality, Effiduase in the Sekyere East District, Nkawie in the Atwima Nwabiagya Municipal, Goaso in the Asunafo North Municipality and Atebubu-Amantin in the Atebubu Municipality among other places.
Mr Keyeremanten said for the centres to become effective, the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI) and the Rural Enterprise Programme, which has supervisory responsibilities over the centres, had developed operational manuals to guide the work of the BRCs.
The staffs of the centres had been adequately trained to be able to identify business opportunities in their various districts and develop plans for use by enterprises and businesses, he stated.
The minister said all the BRCs were connected to enable them to share information and experiences, as well as exchange knowledge to make them competitive.
“We have established a minimum standard of performances for all staff of the centres. We expect that your services provide value to enterprises and push them to the very top. Integrity and ethical values must underpin your work.
“We have also developed clear lines of reporting to the NBSSI and the Rural Enterprise Programme for them to offer you the needed support to be effective,” Mr Kyerematen added.
Executive Director of NBSSI, Kosi Yankey-Ayeh, urged the BRCs to work closely with the business advisory centres in the various communities to help grow the micro-, small- and medium-scale enterprises within their catchment areas.
Chairman of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Trade and Industry, Ato Panford, noted that the BRCs were integral part of the government’s industrialisation and job-creation agenda.
He, therefore, urged the BRCs to be proactive and go into their communities in search of business opportunities and develop models for the local people to tap from or adopt.
FROM CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS, ADUGYAMA