The African Development Bank Group has approved a $1 million grant to boost local content and development of Small and Medium-Size Enterprise (SME) initiatives in the southern African nation of Mozambique.
The grant, from the Youth Entrepreneurship and Innovation Multi-Donor Trust Fund (YEI MDTF), will provide technical and institutional assistance to the Instituto para a Promoção das Pequenas e Médias Empresas, or IPEME, for the direct support of start-ups and SMEs, with a particular focus on youth-led and women-owned in business.
The Mozambique YWEB Start Up Project with the IPEME will be a multisector local content initiative focusing on tourism, manufacturing, agriculture, ICT, health, and transport, emphasizing youth-led businesses and WEBs. It aims to facilitate supply links between such initiatives and large companies, including government entities and non-governmental organizations (NGO’s).
Solomon Quaynor, African Development Bank’s Vice President in charge of Private Sector, Infrastructure and Industrialization said the project would improve job creation, linkages between local SMEs, and youth and women empowerment.
Quaynor noted: “They are in line with the Bank’s core objective of supporting private sector development in Africa, including through the promotion of local entrepreneurship, the development of value chains and support to MSMEs that represent the bulk of the African economic fabric.”
Country Director Pietro Toigo said: “The project will also support more than 150 local companies by facilitating access to skills and certification, contracts with large firms and finance from local financial institutions. These partnerships demonstrate a strong commitment from the Mozambique government to support local business, communities and create jobs, particularly in the north of the country.”
IPEME, which in English stands for The Institute for the Promotion of Small and Medium Enterprises, is a public entity under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, aimed at boosting and developing small and medium sized businesses.