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21.04.2004 Regional News

Textile Weavers Acquire Business Skills.

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Bolgatanga, April 20, GNA - A three-day workshop on the development of entrepreneurial skills in the traditional textile weaving business for 26 women in the Upper East Region began on Tuesday in Bolgatanga.

It aims, among other things, at exposing the participants to available sources of funding and the modalities through which these funds could be accessed to enable them to expand their businesses. IMEX International is organizing the workshop sponsored by USAID under its Ghana Trade and Investment Reform Programme. Trade Aid Integrated (TAI), a Bolgatanga based Non-governmental Organization is facilitating it.

The Programmes Manager for TAI, Mr. Nicholas Apokerah, told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Bolgatanga that participants would be taken through business management, budgeting, book keeping and planning. He said the women would be sensitised on their tax obligations and responsibilities as entrepreneurs, adding that one key area which has always brought confrontation between tax agencies and the business community is the general low level of knowledge about the country's tax system among Ghanaians.

Mr. Apokerah indicated that at the end of the workshop the participants would be expected to gain basic knowledge and skills to operate their own businesses and to produce marketable products for the local and international markets.

He said with the coming into being of the Presidential Special Initiative (PSI) on Garment, and the promotion of private sector development and growth, the participants have a good opportunity to penetrate the international market. "To be able to do that, there is the need for them to broaden their knowledge in the trade environment," he added.

The Programme Manager commended USAID for funding the workshop and appealed to other donor agencies to support his outfit to facilitate similar workshops and training for other groups in the crafts and basket weaving industries.

He said a similar workshop had earlier been organized at Wa, the Upper West Regional capital, for 39 women in the same category and that another one would be organized in Tamale. He indicated that about 100 weavers are expected to benefit from the programme.

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