Koforidua, March 20, GNA - A two-day workshop on Business Advocacy for Public Sector officials, utility service providers and other stakeholders drawn from the Eastern Region opened in Koforidua on Wednesday.
The BUSAC FUND is organizing the workshop aimed to sensitize public officials on the role they are expected to play to support the private sector to find solutions to problems confronting the business environment.
Mrs. Helen Ntoso, the Eastern Regional Minister, in a speech read on her behalf, asked public sector institutions to help private sector businesses to grow.
'If private businesses do not grow as they should, we would be forced to patronize other goods and services from foreign companies and firms.
'If we patronize goods produced by local businesses we would be contributing to the growth of the local businesses and the growth of the national economy'.
Mrs. Ntoso said the private sector was facing challenges and cited lack of access to credit as an example.
She called on the public sector to take keen interest in the development of private businesses and help in overcoming challenges.
Mrs. Ntoso said: 'As the private sector organizes advocacy campaigns to get their problems solved, let us listen to them and help them solve the problems'.
She commended the BUSAC FUND for supporting 18 business associations in nine districts in the region but appealed that the assistance be extended to the remaining 17 districts in the area.
Mr. Ntoso was optimistic that at the end of the workshop, the participants would be in a better position to appreciate the concerns of the private business and work towards the amelioration or eradication of the seemingly insurmountable business challenges.
Mr. Nicholas Jorgensen Gebara, Fund Manager, BUSAC FUND, noted that the private sector was key to economic development.
'It contributes to the creation of employment and is a source of income generation that would be a stabilizing factor for the local community in terms of securing jobs and offering employment opportunities to the upcoming young generation and reducing poverty in the communities', he said.
Mr. Gebara said there was the need for the public and private sector to create a common platform for the establishment of constructive dialogue on economic development issues.