Tuesday, May 21, 2024

President Hichilema honours MSMES, Pledges more support

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President Hakainde Hichilema has honoured 44 innovative and job-creating Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) and cooperatives from across Zambia’s 10 provinces at the inaugural Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC) Presidential Awards ceremony.

Delivering the keynote address in Lusaka, Minister of Small and Medium Enterprise Development, Elias Mubanga, the Head of State, said his government remains committed to rebuilding the economy through a robust private sector dominated by MSMEs.
“Since my government came into power in 2021, the empowerment fund increased from K41 million to K350 million in 2022, K398 million in 2023, and K397 million in 2024. This increase in funding is expected to show in terms of improvement in the number of MSMEs accessing finance which should translate into improved performance and ultimately increase in job creation,” President Hichilema stated.

The President said the awards recognise MSMEs’ innovation, business growth, and job creation efforts in line with his administration’s three key pillars of economic development through the MSME sector.

15 enterprises were awarded for exhibiting innovation, another 15 for outstanding contributions to job creation, while 14 were honoured for demonstrating growth over two financial years.

“The funds you are receiving should be utilised to further grow your businesses and aspire for bigger awards. The government is committed to ensuring you receive support beyond this stage. The desire is to see you remain sustainable and resilient,” President Hichilema told the awardees.

The Head of State reaffirmed governments move to promote innovation through initiatives like the National Innovation Fund under the Ministry of Technology and Science.

He congratulated CEEC for spearheading the awards, saying the commission should continue motivating and inspiring more MSMEs to participate.

Over 100 MSMEs from across the country competed for the prestigious Presidential Awards this year.
And Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission Board Chairperson Mr. Jason Kazilimani has assured MSMEs of the commissions support.

Mr. Kazilimani said MSMEs play an important role in the production cycle and job creation in Zambia.
He added that the commission is committed to resolving the challenges faced by MSMEs and cooperatives, such as access to finance and business infrastructure.

3 COMMENTS

  1. Encourage more to do business, support them through loans, enforce the banks & all lending organisations to lend capital / loans to small businesses. No govt create jobs in this world but the private sector such as these small businesses.. All the govts do is create easy playing field for their citizens to do business. Make it easy for citizens to start businesses & access financial boosts / loans. Zambians are NOT lazy, we hustle.. see the informal traders.. everyone hustles but we lack political will. Open the economy for people to trade as it was before you came into power, please

  2. @UFIMBENUMA, made the following comment, “Open the economy for people to trade as it was before you came into power, please”. Before this government, when was ever the case in Zambia?
    The only people who were free to trade were PF cadres, PF members and associates, and those willing to pay corruption fees.
    Something I am seeing with Zambians is that because they personally hate someone, in this case President HH, they will always have to find something negative to say.
    This fund has moved from a measly K41 million in 2021 to K397 million in 2024, an increase of over 868%, surely that opens the economy for people to trade as never before.
    Instead of hating learn to appreciate.

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