The Ministry of Business Development yesterday launched season II of the Presidential Pitch, aimed at realising government’s ambition of helping to unleash an entrepreneurial revolution in the country.
The Presidential Pitch, which is one of the flagship programmes of the ministry, was also birthed to support young entrepreneurs with brilliant business ideas, but for lack of money are unable to implement them.
Following the launch, prospective applicants are urged to send their business proposals to the portal with the domain name www.mod.gov.gh from yesterday, July 11, to July 25, 2019, after which the portal will be closed.
Business experts will screen and select final 20 business proposals, where finalists will pitch before the President and other dignitaries on August 16, 2019.
The successful businesses will be subsequently supported with funding between GH¢20,000 and GH¢50,000 to expand their businesses.
Launching the season two of the Presidential Pitch, Minister of Business Development, Dr Mohammed Ibrahim Awal, urged all young people or groups below the age of 35 years with workable business to apply, irrespective of their educational backgrounds.
According to him, the Presidential Pitch has four set criteria which applications will go through in selecting winners.
“The entries must be innovative, unique and not conform. Business ideas must be different; it should have an impact on society, be scalable to grow big and must have employment capabilities,” the minister outlined.
He emphasised that the programme was to help young people with brilliant ideas.
The minister said the programme has been very rewarding, indicating that Aisha Limann, the winner of season one, is setting up a factory in the northern part of the country, as well as other beneficiaries who are doing so well in their respective businesses.
“We want to build the ecosystem to make young people work to create jobs and wealth for themselves and Ghanaians,” he assured.
According to Dr Awal, Ghana is largely a very youthful population with 60 per cent of the population under 30 years, which implies that the youth is a very big resource for the country.
Additionally, he said about 200,000 young graduates are churned out from universities across the country every year, stating that only 10 per cent of this number is absorbed in the public sector and the rest left to their destinies.
He said as a result of this challenge, the president decided that entrepreneurship should be the way to solve youth unemployment, in addition to laudable initiatives such as Free SHS, ‘Planting for Food and Jobs’, and the National Entrepreneurial Innovation Plan (NEIP).
Ghana has been chosen to host the secretariat of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), which is creating market of over $1.2 billion and $3 trillion in trade per annum in Africa, but according to Dr Awal, “The only way Ghana can tap into this big market and opportunity is to prepare young people to be entrepreneurs for their products, not to only meet the local requirement but global standards through programmes like the Presidential Pitch.”
Chief Director of the MoBD, Alhaji Hafiz Adam, in his brief remarks, noted that youth unemployment is not only an economic, but also a national security one, hence government is making all efforts to create job opportunities for as many as it can.
Businesses that placed between the 11th and 20th positions were awarded laptops as part of their consolation prizes at the launch yesterday.
Source: The Finder