SME support programme

Support for Growth and Investment Readiness

A tailored support programme
creating growth and jobs


Entrepreneurial activities, training and plant construction: tailored support for SMEs in Senegal and Ghana

With the population of Africa expected to double to approximately 2.5 billion by 2050, about 25 million new jobs will be needed every year. Across the continent, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) play a pivotal role in providing decent local employment. However, these enterprises often face challenges in achieving sustainable growth. Invest for Jobs has therefore launched a support programme for SMEs in Ghana and Senegal.

The SME Support Programme uses tailor-made training courses to strengthen entrepreneurial capacities, and it facilitates the procurement of new equipment and production machinery. Its overarching objective is to enhance the market performance of SMEs as well as their openness to potential investments. The support is tailored to the specific needs of each enterprise.

The programme targets local SMEs in Senegal and Ghana, chosen in a transparent selection process. Eligible companies have between six and 250 employees and exhibit significant growth and employment potential. They have already established a presence in their local markets, offering consumer goods or services that meet the demands of local people or can be exported. The interaction of various tailored support measures presents these companies with opportunities to rapidly improve their competitiveness, and it contributes to the creation of new and decent jobs.


From plastic recycling to dried fruit production: the companies are as individual as the support they receive

In Senegal, the project is currently supporting four SMEs in the textile, recycling, skilled crafts, and food sectors, contributing to the creation and improvement of jobs in the regions of Thiès, Dakar and Louga.

An example: Recycling by Proplast in Senegal

Proplast is a significant player in the Senegalese recycling industry. Around 5,400 small-scale collectors can sell plastic waste to Proplast at 20 collection points. Each month, 100 employees collect more than 100 tonnes of plastic, which are then turned into granules. These are sold to plastic manufacturers or transformed into furniture such as school benches. Invest for Jobs provides expertise to assist Proplast with site planning, training, and financial and production planning. With cofinancing for a milling machine as part of the SME Support Programme, Proplast can now increase its furniture production and recruit additional staff.

At Proplast in Senegal
© GIZ / Felix M. Weber // A Proplast product

In Ghana, Invest for Jobs is supporting four agricultural enterprises and a bamboo-processing company. These contribute to reducing food waste, securing prospects for young people in rural areas, and increasing the proportion of renewable energy used.

An example: Dried fruit from Groital in Ghana

The Ghanaian company Groital produces dried fruits as a means of reducing post-harvest losses. As well as pineapple, it processes mango, ginger, and coconut, buying in surplus fruit from local farmers. Now, the company is planning to increase its capacity to supply European and American export markets. Invest for Jobs is assisting Groital with the procurement of machines, while providing training in accounting, financial management, marketing, and sales.

Dried pineapple from Groital in Ghana
© GIZ / Felix M. Weber // Dried pineapple from Groital in Ghana


Entrepreneurship can flourish

Combining Invest for Jobs’ expertise with the entrepreneurial power and potential of the supported SMEs has turned this approach into a successful instrument for creating new, decent jobs, establishing better working conditions, raising incomes, and delivering needs-based, practical training.

Production at Proplast
© GIZ / Felix M. Weber // Production at Proplast

The companies have enhanced their commercial processes and increased their competitiveness, especially with respect to socially and environmentally sustainable production. They have also reported improved business contacts, both domestically and internationally, and a marked reduction in barriers to investment and production.

The SME Support Programme is implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and sequa gGmbH as part of the Special Initiative "Decent Work for a Just Transition" of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

Project details

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Project objectives

sustainable employment just transition growth access to capital


Agri-Business Textile Other

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Under the Invest for Jobs brand, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) has put together a package of measures to support German, European and African companies in investment activities that have a high impact on employment in Africa. The Special Initiative "Decent Work for a Just Transition" – the official title – offers comprehensive advice, contacts and financial support to overcome investment barriers. The development objective is to work together with companies to create up to 100,000 good jobs and to improve working conditions and social protection in its African partner countries.

Partner countries: Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Morocco, Rwanda, Senegal and Tunisia.

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