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Mr Nii Lante Vanderpuiye, Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry has re-affirmed government’s commitment in creating an enabling environment for investors in the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) sector.

He said investors and private companies, who have partnered the Venture Capital Trust Fund (VCTF), in setting up funds, have enjoyed some tax incentives and that by promoting private capital into impact investing, funds will be created to invest in both new and existing businesses.

Mr Vanderpuye said this at the launch of Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA) Centre for Impact Investing and Impact Investing Policy Research Report in Accra.

He explained that the Centre is to provide the backbone for the promotion of impact investing in the country through advocacy and research, which will encourage government to direct policy and design specific incentives to attract investors into the impact investing space.

Mr Vanderpuye noted that the country is confronted with lots of social and environmental problems, which when addressed, can impact lives, adding that, graduate unemployment could be reduced when entrepreneurship and adequate financing is available to bring up entrepreneurs and SMEs.

Mr Anthony Siaw, Chief Executive Officer of Bridge Capital, a fund management firm, launching the Impact Investing Policy Research, explained that Impact Investing is investments intended to create positive impact beyond financial return.

He said the country’s investment market is relatively small due to low savings, low financial innovation, large informal market and a history of unstable economic fundamentals, adding that, the impact investing helps to attract local and international investors through effective stakeholder engagement.

Mr Siaw said the report provides a holistic review of the environment that calls for the need to attract private capital to support government’s efforts to address social and environmental challenges in the country.

He said the report presents an overview of the various sectors of the country’s economy in areas such as Agriculture, Education, Financial Services, Health, Water and Sanitation, Housing and Energy.

Mr Siaw said the report will act as a conduit to direct private capital to the various sectors challenges in accordance with government’s policy objectives.

Mr Daniel Doku, Chief Executive Officer of VCTF, said the outfit on May 8, 2013, signed a Memoranda of Understanding with GIMPA to establish a Centre for Impact Investing in the country.

“The partnership was to establish a collaborative framework for the promotion of impact investing as a means of developing a business community of social enterprises, to deal with the social and environmental challenges confronting the country” he added.

He said VCTF with support from the Rockefeller Foundation, commissioned a comprehensive study of the impact investing policy environment in the country in 2012, hence the outcome of the report being launched.

Mr Doku said the Centre would provide positive transformation of the country’s entrepreneurial ecosystem and deliver solutions that reflect positively on the communities within which it operates.

Professor Franklyn Kwabena Manu, Rector of GIMPA expressed satisfaction for the initiative, adding that, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is not on sponsoring programmes but investing in projects that would impact the lives of people.

He said the establishment of the Centre will address challenges in CSR in the country, as well as give guidelines to companies and institutions on the importance of the new CSR, adding that, the time is due for the academic industry to use its knowledge and expertise to help develop the country.
Source: GNA

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