SME support platform introduced in the WAEMU region under the aegis of Making Finance Work for Africa
A regional consultation for the introduction of a network of small to medium-sized enterprise (SME) support facilities in the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) was held in Dakar on March 29th.A regional consultation for the introduction of a network of small to medium-sized enterprise (SME) support facilities in the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) was held in Dakar on March 29th.
"The idea is to create a regional platform for SME support agencies to enhance their collaboration and enable them engage in the policy dialogue with national and regional authorities, other financial sector stakeholders and development partners in order to boost the delivering of non-financial services to SMEs in the WAEMU region," said Stefan Nalletamby, Partnership Coordinator of Making Finance Work for Africa (MFW4A).
He believes this platform will help to maximise the impact of SME support agencies in strengthening SMEs and thus helping them to have greater access to finance for their development, which will result in more jobs and greater contribution to the economies of the region.
In most African countries, SMEs contribute on average to over 40 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), and account for roughly 50 percent of employment. Yet, SMEs in the region still face serious structural obstacles that impede their expansion and inadequate access to finance continues to be one of the most significant impediments to creation, survival and growth of SMEs.
The participants decided to formalise this network and to entrust the Secretariat with the Agence de Development et d’Encadrement des Petites et Moyennes Entreprises (ADEPME) of Senegal.