88% of Small and Medium Scale Enterprises across the country do not have international certification to take advantage of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCTFA).
This is according to research findings conducted by CUTS International and GIZ Ghana.
According to the Head of Research at CUTS International, Isaac Yaw Obeng, this will be a barrier to local businesses.
Speaking at a Public-Private Dialogue on the Private Sector Role and Participation in the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, he said most SMEs lack the capacity to reach out to partners across the world.
39% of SMEs use emails to connect and only 29% of them have a website to connect to customers”, Mr Obeng mentioned.
On financial services, the findings showed that 70% of the small enterprises operate using bank accounts from respective banks across the country.
“Over 70 percent of them use bank accounts which I think is good news for us and we hope they continue that way”, he stated
On his part, the West African Regional Director for CUTS International, Appiah Kusi-Adomako said the SMEs space needs a robust management system
“Ghanaian SMEs are doing a great job, but in fighting for the AfCFTA and benefiting from it, I think it’s time they try to devise strategies to benefit from the AfCFTA. The government must also step in and support them in this quest”, he said
The findings are to improve the framework conditions to unlock the potential of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement for small and medium enterprises in Ghana.
Small Scale Enterprises in particular are being urged to build their capacities to be able to trade effectively and efficiently by the time trading under AfCFTA swings into full gear.