Accra, Oct. 30 , GNA – National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI) in partnership with SPINnet Textile and Garment Cluster has launched an incubator programme to nurture and train entrepreneurs in the garment and textile sector.
The incubator programme seeks to promote networking among the industry players and to mobilise more resources for the benefit of the garment industry.
It also aims to train potential entrepreneurs in industry compliance standards, support businesses through mentorship, networking business development, financial support, access to markets and advisory services.
Launching the programme, Mr Robert Ahomka Lindsey, the Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, said the incubator has helped to bridge the skills gap in the garment and textile industry as well as enhance revenue growth in the export sector.
The programme is targeted at the youth, polytechnic and university graduates as well as national service personnel to promote proficiency in the market driven skills in the textile and garment production value chain.
Mr Lindsey said the programme is to nurture entrepreneurs in the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises sector (MSMEs) through occupational skills development and promote entrepreneurship and business development services to existing MSMEs and start-ups operating in the textile industry.
Mr Lindsey said the MSMEs sector is the high growth sector in Ghana, making huge contributions to job creation and the Gross Domestic Product.
Despite the huge contribution, he said, the MSMEs continue to face many challenges in their production capacity and competitiveness to take full advantage of local and international opportunities.
The challenges include financing, low productivity and difficulty in achieving economics of scale, difficulty in accessing market information, lack of modern technology, high cost of research and development and shortage of skills personnel.
Mr Lindsey said government’s 10-point industrial plan, which has embedded in it MSMEs development programme to enhance the productive capacity entrepreneurs and competitiveness to help existing businesses to grow and to create jobs and opportunities
He said the programme would help tap the huge potential of the export market with value added products.
Ms Kosi Yankey, Executive Director NBSSI, said the choice of the garment and textile sector was because the important role it plays in the economy though its contribution has waned over the few years through the shutdown of garment factories.
She said the public private programme is to ensure that the entrepreneurs and people involved in the programme have their skills upgraded so that they are sustainable.
Mr Yankey said the main programme would begin in January and urged interested entrepreneurs who would want to participate to apply when the application process opens.
“I am excited about the future of this collaboration and partnership to create opportunity for citizens to build sustainable businesses and to create jobs,” she said.
It is anticipated that over 150 beneficiaries would be trained within the first year of operation of the scheme and 100 start-ups commissioned within the year of operation.
Mr Samuel Dodoo, President SPINnet, said the cluster’s overall vision is to position the garment industry as a significant contributor to the development of the economy through employment creation and revenue generation, particularly in the export sector.
He said it also seeks to harness the strength of the local MSMEs in the garment and textile sector for the collective growth and sustenance of the industry.
He said the incubator programme was opened to groups and individuals who seek to improve on their productivity and competiveness.
Mr Dodoo said the incubator would provide various services, including proficiency training in demand-driven skills set within the textile garment and creative arts industry in the areas of occupational skills, specialised production techniques, special machinery operation and business development services, among others.
He urged all members of the sector and mass production organisations as well as sister associations to take the opportunity to improve on their production skills.