The Government of Ghana is to unveil a number of novel initiatives in the next budget statement aimed at supporting the private sector and small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs), Vice President Paa Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur said on Tuesday.

Dwelling on the macro economic gains the country had made in recent times, the Vice President stressed the need for businesses to take advantage of the gains to translate the low inflation rate in the country into jobs and business growth.

The Vice President made the call during a meeting with executives of Standard Chartered Bank at the Flagstaff House in Accra.

He asked for increased support from the financial institutions towards improving access to credit to aid effective business growth across the country.

He said a partnership with the government in that regard would also ensure that the cost of credit was reduced to enable small scale businesses to secure the needed support to develop for the benefit of the economy.

Vice President Amissah-Arthur, an Economist and a former Governor of the Bank of Ghana, therefore charged Standard Chartered Bank and local banks to spearhead the reduction in cost of credit provided for the SMEs.

?We will request cooperation and partnership of the financial institutions in undertaking these initiatives,? he said, but gave no further details of the initiatives.

He lauded the relationship between the government and Stanchart, and expressed optimism that more dividends would accrue from the partnership for the benefit of the local economy.

The delegation was led by Diana Layfield, Standchart?s Regional Chief Executive Officer for Africa.

She commended Ghana for the steady economic growth over the years saying the bank was impressed with the gains.

Madam  Layfield is in Accra for the bank?s regional meeting, and according to her, the choice of Ghana for the meeting reflected the bank?s confidence in the Ghanaian economy.

She said the bank was impressed about the profile of Ghana?s economic prospects and declared the bank?s intention to increase its investment in Ghana.

?Ghana?s economic reforms are hugely encouraging for the bank,? she said.

Source: GNA

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