President Akufo-Addo says a global effort is the surest way to revive all failed and struggling businesses as a result of the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has left global economies bleeding for nearly a year now.
Speaking at the global launch of For Better Business Together (4BBT), an event organised by the Ministry of Business Development in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and the Business for Peace Foundation, at the Kempinski Hotel Gold Coast City, President Akufo-Addo said the devastating effects of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) on the world economy shows that it will take a global outlook to deal with the disease.
The theme of the 4BBT partnership is “Post COVID-19, Rebuilding Global Businesses Together”.
“The destruction of global supply chains has reinforced the necessity for closer co-operation among all countries in the world,” said President Akufo-Addo in his keynote address. “Even as business leaders navigate COVID-19, it is imperative that we find a balance between profitability, viability, employee safety and happiness.
“These are defining moments and business organisations must endeavour to commit to broader goals including sustainability, social justice and the attainment of the United Nations 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
“The restructuring of the global financial architecture to enable access to fresh capital by developing nations, now more than ever, is another such priority which is of necessity if the gains chalked in transforming our respective economies are not to be eroded and the standard of living of our peoples is not to be dangerously lowered,” the president said.
President Akufo-Addo noted that locally, his government has initiated the Coronavirus Alleviation Programme (CAP), whose objective is to protect households and livelihoods, support micro, small and medium-scale businesses, minimise job losses and source additional funding for promotion of industries, to shore up and expand industrial output for domestic consumption and exports.
“Out of the CAP initiative emerged the CAP Business Support Sscheme, which is targeted at MSMEs in the formal and informal sectors that have been affected by the economic downturn caused by the pandemic.
“Thus far, some 180,000 beneficiaries across the country have been supported under this initiative,” the president said.
The For Better Business Together (4BBT) programme is a new global partnership to advance the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and strengthen business worldwide following the outbreak of the novel coronavirus. The pandemic continues to have devastating effects on the economies of the world, and especially on micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs).
The programme aims to inspire business-worthy behaviour, discuss and critically analyse specific local issues, and serve as a convergence point for young people from across the world who have innovative ideas to connect with entrepreneurs who have the solutions and investors who have SDG perspectives.
It will seek to address some of the local sustainability challenges and mobilise local entrepreneurs and businesses to find solutions.
Ghana, with about 65% of its population of 30 million below the age of 30, has been chosen for the global launch of the 4BBT programme. The country’s sound democratic credentials, political stability, visionary leadership and vibrant entrepreneurial and start-up ecosystem made her the obvious choice for the global launch of 4BBT.
As co-chair of 4BBT with Prime Minister Erna Solberg of Norway, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has shown excellent management of the COVID-19 outbreak and in so doing has gained global recognition. A significant outcome of the 4BBT programme is expected to be the facilitation of SDG-aligned investments, with potential partnerships in local start-ups/scale-ups and established businesses to address targeted development challenges.
The programme is powered by Ghana’s Ministry of Business Development (MoBD) in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme, the International Chamber of Commerce and the Business for Peace Foundation (BfP) of Norway.
Wilberforce Asare / Asaase Radio