Small and Medium Enterprises Development Minister Elias Mubanga has commended Ecobank for partnering with government to empower Marketers in Lusaka with capital to boost their businesses.
Mr Mubanga says during the Ecobank day held at the Michael Chilufya Market in Lusaka that government will also start a programme of offering loans to markers to invest in improving their businesses and that the plan is to target one million Small and medium Markers throughout the country.
Mr Mubanga urged the marketers to learn how to bank their money for them to grow their business.
He said marketers should also approach his ministry to ensure that they find ways of preserving tomatoes which mostly go to waste.
The Minister said he is proud of Ecobanks corporate social responsibility to help the vulnerable marketers to boost their business.
He said government will ensure most Zambians are financially literate for them to contribute to the growth of the economy.
Mr Mubanga said capacity has to be built in Zambians for them to ensure that some of the businesses are strictly for the Zambians.
“The marketers receiving the financial empowerment funds from Ecobank should use it wisely to benefit them, this relationship with the bank is beneficial and commendable,” he said.
Mr Mubanga said the government values small and medium businesses because they contribute 90 percent of all the business in the country.
He said government want to improve the markets in the country because all the people depend on the markets for their survival.
Ecobank Managing Director Oladji Charmel said his institution is delighted to increase financial literacy and financial inclusion to women and youths in marginalized communities.
Mt Charmel notes that this year’s Ecobank day will focus on increasing financial literacy as it is a life changing skill.
“Ecobank day provides us with an opportunity to display our commitment to giving people the necessary knowledge and skills expected to address essential and every day money decisions such as budgeting and saving,” Mr Charmel said.
The Ecobank Managing Director handed over a cheque worth K250,000 to vulnerable but viable markers to invest into their businesses and improve their livelihood.
Zambia National Marketers Credit Association President Mupila Kameya thanked Ecobank for exhibiting good social responsibility to empower his members with capital to improve their businesses.
Mr Kameya said there is a need for empowering over six million informal businesses who are mostly marketers for them to contribute to the growth of the economy.