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MSMEs engine for economic growth – UBA

By BUUMBA CHIMBULU

A robust Micro-Small and Medium Entrepreneurs (MSMEs) sector plays a critical role in the growth of the economy and should therefore be supported.

An economy cannot survive without a vibrant MSMEs sector as it contributes about 18 percent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and accounts for 47 percent of employment, according to United Bank for Africa (UBA) Zambia Chief Executive Officer, Chinedu Obeta.

According to Mr Obeta, MSMEs sector played an important role in the economic development of a country.

He stressed their role in terms of production, employment generation, contribution to exports and facilitating equitable distribution of income remained critical.

“Most plays in the sector in Africa including Zambia find it difficult to access funds from bank because they do not what it takes to access the funds but with right training they will be able to come-up with bank proposals,” Mr Obeta said.

This was during an online capacity building and financial training, MSME business workshop yesterday.

The meeting was attended by over 50 MSMEs from various sectors including representatives from Zambia Development Agency and United States Agency for International Development.

Mr Obeta indicated that UBA Zambia was supporting MSMEs with capacity building and financial training to assist them access funds from banks.

Currently, the major challenged faced by most MSMEs in the country is lack of capital due to most financial institutions not being willing to give loans to them because they are considered high risk.

Mr Obeta, however observed the need for all the players both public and private sector to address the issue inhabiting the MSMES from access funds from banks.

He said the sector needs leadership and business skills so that they can have capacity to pay back the loan and use the money for the intended purpose.

“Potential for growth is there if the entrepreneurs have financial discipline and avoid impulsive spending,” Mr Obeta stated.

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