Fifty members of a group, Women Entrepreneurs on The Go, met at the Ghana Export Promotion Authority’s (GEPA) Impact hub in Accra last Friday to discuss ways of improving their various businesses.
Some of the women, a number of them outside the country, joined through zoom.
The group was founded by the Chief Executive Officer of GEPA, Dr Afua Asabea Asare, with the view to bringing female entrepreneurs together to share ideas, support one another and brief them on some of the facilities offered by GEPA and other organisations which they could take advantage of to develop.
The meeting was dubbed: “Women — Positioning ourselves to take advantage of the AfCFTA”, and had officials from The Prudential Bank and Hollard Insurance to share information of some of the products the women could utilise.
AfCFTA — African Continental Free Trade Area — is a project of Agenda 2063 of the African Union, Africa’s own development vision.
It aims at boosting intra-African trade by providing a comprehensive and mutually beneficial trade agreement among the member states, covering trade in goods, services, investment, intellectual property rights and competition policy.
In her address, Dr Asare said she chose to organise the meeting in the hub in order to introduce the many facilities available there which the entrepreneurs could benefit from at no cost.
They included meeting areas, a library, equipment for organising online meetings, and an area where samples of various Ghanaian-made products and packaging had been displayed.
Also present at the hub were desks with officials from the Food and Drugs Authority, Ghana Standards Authority and the Plant Protection and Regulatory Services of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, ready to assist entrepreneurs.
“If you have to meet someone for business in town and you have no office, just come and use this space. I could even be your personal assistant for the day,” she offered.
Dr Asare called on the women to register with the GEPA in order to be assisted to take part in fairs, both locally and internationally, and to participate in the many seminars organised on various topics.
Such assistance, she said, included freighting products to the fair grounds, helping to secure visas and providing spaces for the exhibitors at no cost.
She explained to the entrepreneurs that some of them could come together to meet demands instead of working in isolation and being unable to meet such demands and money.
For example, she said, if there was a demand for a number of products which a single entrepreneur did not have the capacity to supply, a number of them could pool resources to meet such demand.
The Head of Commercial Banking at Prudential Bank, Mr Frederick Adomako-Ansah, introduced some of the products of the bank which could assist the women to improve on their businesses.
Head of Retail at Hollard Insurance , Ms Yvonne Narki Dowuona, discussed the need for the women to patronise insurance products, and explained to them some of the products which could protect them from losing everything they had worked so hard to build as a result of a mishap.