Ahead of the launch of the YouStart programme in July 2022, the government has begun a nationwide stakeholder engagement to sensitise Ghanaians on the policy.
The engagements formed part of measures to ensure the programme is well understood by Ghanaians and garner the necessary support and acceptance.
The programme is expected to be funded with revenues from the Electronic Transaction Levy( E-levy).
Government intends to allocate GHc10 billion to the flagship initiative.
At a ceremony held in Kumasi to engage Regional Ministers, Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives from the Bono East, Ahafo, Western North, Ashanti and Bono regions, Dr John Ampontuah Kumah, a Deputy Minister of Finance, highlighted the relevance of the YouStart initiative.
He explained that the YouStart programme provided a unique opportunity to address youth unemployment and develop their potential to create jobs for themselves.
“We must all rally behind the Government to push the Youstart programme. That is why we will engage Ghanaians before the President launches it,” he said.
Dr Kumah, also the member of Parliament for Ejisu, said the Government would engage widely and incorporate the feedback into the programme.
Some government officials at the ceremony included Mr Dan Botwe, the Minister of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Government, Mr Kofi Ofosu Nkansah, Chief Executive Officer of the National Entrepreneurship and Innovation, and Mrs Korsi Yankey-Ayeh, Chief Executive Officer of Ghana Enterprises Agencies.
The YouStart programme seeks to support young entrepreneurs to gain access to capital, training and technical skills to enable them to start, build and grow their own businesses.
The initiative targets young people and students between 18 and 35 years who have brilliant business ideas and viable businesses and support them to nurture, grow and expand their businesses and job creation opportunities.
Government, through the YouStart programme, intends to build an entrepreneurial nation by providing some of the key enablers that make entrepreneurship a success.
It includes access to finance and markets, mentorship, strategic partnership and digital linkages, technical assistance and business advisory support service.
Given the high rate of youth unemployment in Ghana, the government intends to use the YouStart programme to create more jobs and support the expansion and growth of Ghanaian businesses within the next three years.