Financial institutions urged to reduce rates on loans

Financial institutions have been urged to reduce the high interest rates on the loans they gave to traders and businessmen. The Reverend S.K. Fugah, President of Anloga Carpenters Union, said most Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) had in recent times either folded up or became stranded due to their inability to access loans and other credit facilities from financial institutions due to high interest rates. This, he said, could aggravate the high rate of unemployment in the country in view of the crucial role SMEs played in creating employment for the majority of the people. Rev Fugah was speaking at a meeting of the Anloga Carpenters Union in Kumasi at the weekend. The meeting was to sensitize the members on the challenges the carpentry industry was facing due to globalization and technological advancement. He said the Union was liaising with the Micro-Finance and Small Loans Centre (MASLOC) to access credit facilities for members. Rev Fugah said the carpenters were worried at the high rate at which the nation's forests were being depleted. He said the Union had therefore decided improve on the situation by embarking on regular tree planting exercises with the help of the Forestry Commission to enhance the eco-system. Besides, he said, the Union was also collaborating with Scanstyle Bio-Fuel Company Limited on the possibility of recycling waste such as sawdust to improve the environment.