President Mahama on Tuesday challenged Ghanaian youth to demonstrate their creativity and skills in the provision of goods and services to move into the era of prosperity.
He also urged them to be bold and confident in whatever ventures they were engaged in to harness prosperity for themselves and to create jobs for other youth in the country.
President Mahama said this when he launched a GH¢ 10 million Youth Enterprise Support (YES) initiative in Accra.
The YES initiative, which is in fulfillment of President Mahama’s 2012 campaign promise, is a flagship programme to assist young Ghanaians with creative and innovative business ideas and plans to achieve their full potential.
It is a multi- sectoral initiative operating under the Office of the President and drawing collaborative support from key agencies including; National Board for Small Scale Industries, National Youth Authority, Ministry of Youth and Sports, Ministry of Trade and Industry and Ministry of Finance.
Apart from providing funding for Ghanaian youth between the ages of 18 and 35, the YES initiative would also provide the beneficiaries with effective training and Entrepreneurial mentoring that would catapult their businesses to higher levels.
It would also give young Ghanaians an opportunity to showcase their talents and Entrepreneurial skills and challenge the youth to start new businesses and employ other youth.
President Mahama said the youth were in possession of the development mantle that would become the bedrock of business and development for coming generations and encouraged them to exhibit high level of professionalism that would spur others on to create wealth and prosperity.
He said the establishment of YES was a demonstration of the confidence and trust his administration had in the youth to turn their dreams to life saving opportunities and appealed to creative youth in the age brackets to take advantage of the fund to better their lots.
President Mahama said much as government was committed to developing young Ghanaians to add value to social services in their surroundings, it was also incumbent on the beneficiaries to leverage their Entrepreneurial skills that would enable their services to go beyond the confines of Ghana’s borders.
He said the upper limits of amount of money to be given to beneficiaries under YES would be GH¢50, 000 and beneficiaries would also need a recommendation letter to support their business proposals in order to access the fund.
President Mahama said although beneficiaries would be expected to repay the YES support through taxation, businesses that ask for tax relief from the beginning of their enterprises would however pay the installments with interest until they settled all their indebtedness.
The President said Business clinics would be held in all the ten regions of the country to create awareness on the call for proposals after which orientation courses would be organised for prospective beneficiaries to present their business plans for selection.