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STATE, ILO TO PARTNER ON SMEs

ILO TO COLLABORATE WITH MINISTRY OF SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRESE DEVELOPMENT

GOVERNMENT and International Labour Organisation (ILO) have partnered to foster development and growth of cooperatives and small and medium enterprises (SMES) in the country.

The collaboration will help provide capacity building, business development and support services for the growth of SMEs to create better employment for citizens.

Ministry of Small and Medium Enterprises Development Permanent Secretary Yvonne Mpundu says opportunities for jobs and wealth lies in emerging businesses, including cooperatives.

Mrs Mpundu said this during a technical meeting to discuss areas of collaboration between the ministry and ILO.

“You may wish to note that as of 2019, Zambia had 110,508 tax-paying SMES. SMEs are engines for any economic transformation and agenda of progress,”

Despite the success, the ministry has identified a training gap in entrepreneurship knowledge by the beneficiaries and weak coordination in the sector.

Small and Medium Enterprise Development Permanent Secretary Mrs. Yvonne Mpundu and International Labour Organisations Country Office Director for Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique Mr. George Okutho poses for a picture

And ILO country director for Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique George Okutho observed that Zambia like many other countries has a large number of MSMEs operating in various sectors and have largely contributed to the economy but still lacked skills support and appropriate financing to enable their businesses grow.

He assured the Ministry of support in ensuring the mandate set by government is achieved and people’s lives are improved.
Mr. Okuthu added that ILO has developed various programs aimed at supporting governments at various levels, ranging from supporting the MSMEs with the right skills set, occupation health at work place, work improvement among others.

 

 

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