Some Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) have already begun feeling the pinch from the caution by banks to cut off loans to businesses due to the high incidence of Non-Performing Loans on their operations.
Some of them who have been speaking to Citi Business News say they have been compelled to find alternatives at rural banks which are unable to meet their huge financial needs.
As a result, they say they have been unable to expand their businesses and provide employment.
“I’ll need about 400,000 cedis because three key equipment that I need; steam jacket, boiler and vacuum pack machine cost 150,000; 100,000 and 60,000 cedis respectively. If I am given the necessary push, I am confident I can compete with companies like Nestle. The banks are not giving me audience perhaps they are of the opinion I am just being too loud,” an SME owner, Naa Ohenewa Tetteh told Citi Business News.
Banks threaten to cut down loans
Figures released by the Bank of Ghana showed that Non Performing Loans (NPLs) increased by 59.9 percent from GH¢ 3.1 billion in March 2015 to GH¢ 4.9 billion in March 2016.
Banking consultant, Nana Otuo Acheampong had predicted of challenging times for businesses following this decision.
He argued that banks will rather prefer to channel investments into risk free ventures to maximize returns for customers and their respective portfolios.
NBSSI assists SMEs to meet loan requirements
Meanwhile the Director of Entrepreneurship Development at the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI), Anna Amo Hinson has blamed the high loan default among Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises for their inability to access credit.
“The banks do not support the Micro and Small Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) because they consider them as high risk areas since some people have gone in for financial support but have defaulted in paying.”
Recounting how the NBSSI is assisting SMEs acquire financial support, Anna Hinson added she is hopeful the trends will reverse if SMEs develop credibility by keeping proper financial records.
“As an institution we assist the SMEs to keep records as we consider it as being very critical to the acquisition of loans. In all the training activities we have been helping businesses to keep proper records since by so doing we believe the financial institutions will be willing to help them with credit,” Anna Hinson added.
By: Pius Amihere Eduku/citibusinessnews.com/Ghana