Mr. Robert Hertz Jackson, a microfinance expert from PH-Anova Solutions called on small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to put in place good financial mechanisms to help make their businesses credible enough to attract bank loans.
He cautioned, however, that they should apply the acquired loans diligently by investing in businesses to help the business grow and be able to repay on time.
Mr. Jackson was speaking at the first annual financial literacy and education conference organized by the Federation of Financial Educators and Organizations (FFEO) in Accra.
The theme of the conference is “Reshaping the future of finance through digitization”.
The Annual Financial Literacy and Education Conference is an annual campaign to raise awareness about financial literacy concepts that help people make financial decisions.
The conference served as a platform for stakeholders to learn and provide them with resources and training so that they can effectively support others in their communities to work towards greater financial security.
It also aimed to build alliances, collaborate, share information and challenge perspectives on their engagement in financial education and how they might take advantage of the opportunities of digitization in the sector. financial.
“Loans are for investment, not personal expenses and you need to do the proper calculations before lending,” he added.
Mr. Joshua Mensah, President of the African Entrepreneurship School, said it would contribute to the vision of the National Financial Education Strategy for citizens to have the knowledge, understanding, skills and confidence to make decisions prudent financial resources for themselves, their families and their communities.
He said financial literacy and business empowerment, especially the SME sector, was essential for the development of the business environment.
He said literacy would enable these small businesses to know what expenses to make in their business transactions in order to avoid unnecessary spending that could affect growth.
Mr Mensah said that financial planning is one of the big issues some companies face and that SMEs with this knowledge will propel their growth.
On retirement planning, planning for the future of children and planning for insurance, he said that “people should be well informed about all of these things to help them in their future financial decisions.”
The president launched the “Sika Tse Game” which would help train individuals to achieve financial independence as he would guide players on their spending and how to invest, among other things.
Ms Rosina Akrofi, education and outreach expert at the Corporate Affairs Unit of the National Pensions Regulatory Authority, said the pension contribution is necessary to prepare individuals to prepare for retirement.
She explained that the first level pension and second level pension contributions were intended for workers in the formal sector, while the third level contributions were intended for the informal sector.
Ms. Akrofi said the third level includes the voluntary provident fund and the personal or group pension scheme for contributors, who were self-employed in the informal sector.
She said the scheme applied to people in the informal sector, who were not covered by any pension scheme under the mandatory part of the three-tier pension scheme.
Mr. Akrofi urged actors in the informal sector, especially SMEs, to start contributing when they retire, as some aspects would be used for investment.
“People in the informal sector who were not covered by compulsory schemes will have 35 percent of their declared income exempt from tax for contribution purposes; while the investment income from investing the plan funds will be tax exempt, ”she said.
She said that the amount of pension contributions in the informal sector was not constant as in the formal sector and that a contributor could decide on any amount they could afford.
Ms Akrofi said a worker can join the pension contribution scheme if he is over 15 years old.