US NGO supports SMEs in oil, gas sector

The Ministry of Trade has secured $5 million from an international non-governmental organisation (NGO) to support small and medium-scale enterprises in the oil and gas sector.

The money will be disbursed over a five-year period.

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between the ministry and the NGO, PYXERA Global , for the release of the money.

The sector minister, Mr Haruna Iddrisu, signed on behalf of the Government of Ghana,  while the United States Ambassador to Ghana Mr Gene Cretz, signed for the NGO.

Background of the programme
Last year, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) awarded a $4.9-million grant to PYXERA Global to implement the programme in the Western Region for a five-year period.

The programme strives to increase the capacity of local business service providers relating to the oil and gas sector’s procurement regulations and standards.

It is also to create a market linkage between the oil and gas sector and collaborate closely with the Enterprise Development Centre to facilitate the sustainable provision of business development services.

Minster of Trade
In his remarks at the signing ceremony,  Mr Haruna Iddrisu said the support was in line with the government’s objective to create the necessary environment “that would improve productivity, build entrepreneurial capacity, innovation and access to finance.”

He said with the implementation of the industrial sector support programme, the ministry would increase the supply and improve the quality of entrepreneurial and management skills of the SMEs.

That, he said, would be achieved through the strengthening of identified and already existing institutions to deliver training programmes that would meet the current and future needs of the manufacturing sector.

Mr Iddrisu, therefore, urged members of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), the Federation of Association of Ghanaian Exporters (FAGE), and other Ghanaian SMEs to take advantage of the opportunity being offered to support their businesses.

US Ambassador
The United States Ambassador to Ghana, said the MoU was a visible demonstration of the commitment of the US Government to ensure that Ghanaian businesses had the expertise and the support needed to bid for and, most importantly, win procurement contracts in the oil and gas sector.

“There can be no clearer example of our strongly held view that local content is a worthy goal and can be mutually beneficial when there is a cooperative process of consultation and shared understanding,” he said.

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