Government’s entrepreneurial-driven initiative YouStart is expected to create about one million jobs with a seed capital of GH¢1 billion, Deputy Minister of Finance John Ampontuah Kumah has said.
Speaking to the Institute of Financial and Economic Journalists (IFEJ) and the Parliamentary Press Corps during a webinar on the 2022 Budget Statement and Economic Policy, he said the initiative would be driven by existing government structures like the Ghana Enterprise Agency, National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Plan (NEIP) and participating banks, as well as the various universities where government would create an endowment fund to make it possible for students to apply for working capital while they are still on campus.
“Existing SMEs and other enterprises could also apply for this funding arrangement to help them grow their operations,” he added.
Mr. Kumah therefore charged IFEJ and the Parliamentary Press Corps to use their media to sensitise the public to the budget, whose theme was: “Sustaining an entrepreneurial nation through fiscal consolidation and job creation.”
“The 2022 Budget is important, especially the communication of measures contained in it, so your role is very critical in explaining the numerous policies and measures that are in the budget,” Mr. Kumah noted.
Each year, as part of its broader goal to sensitise key stakeholders and to galvanise public support, the Ministry of Finance engages the media on key aspects of the budget statement and economic policy.
The deputy minister clarified some of the government’s financial initiatives, such as the E-levy and the reduction and elimination of some taxes and policies.
According to Mr. Kumah, who is also the Member of Parliament for Ejisu Constituency, before the introduction of the E-levy, about 10,000 Ghanaians were surveyed and the results showed that about 40 percent of mobile money users did not transfer more than GH¢100 a day.
This, he explained, meant that not all mobile money transactions would be subjected to the E-levy. Individuals who receive or withdraw money from their “Momo” wallet and those who transfer money from their “Momo” wallet to their bank accounts under the interoperability system will be exempted from the levy.
“No matter the amount you send, the first GH¢100 will not be affected by the E-levy, which is 1.75%,” Mr. Kumah stressed.
On what the nation stood to gain from the E-levy, he stated that, unlike the road toll that generated about GH¢78 million a year, the E-levy was expected to generate GH¢6.9 billion in 2022, which would give government enough fiscal space to pay road contractors anytime they submitted their certificates.