Rikus Grobler | Feb 8, 2018 | 0
Youth credit scheme enters fifth phase
The Credit for Youth in Business programme, an initiative by the National Youth Council of Namibia and Bank Windhoek recently entered its fifth phase.
The programme, which started in 2008, allows for capital and mentorship support to entrepreneurs between the ages of 16 and 35 years. The programme also provides educational and financial support to those that completed the third round of Namibian Youth Credit Scheme (NYCS) loan repayments, as well as graduates from the Vocational Training Centres.
Young business owners that want to benefit from the programme are encouraged to attend one of the Credit for Youth business planning training workshops, prepare simplified business plan on the basis of the said training and submit their business plan to youth council, through regional youth offices.
If an application is positive, applicants have to sign contract with Bank Windhoek, whereafter they pay 10% upfront payment of the required loan amount. The Bank has forged strategic alliances with selected role players in the emerging market sector.
Mbo Luvindao, Manager of Bank Windhoek’s Emerging Small and Medium Enterprises (ESME) Branch, said that the challenges faced by entrepreneurs include lack of access to markets, inadequate education and lack of support services.
“These strategic partnerships (with NYC) can contribute to Namibia’s economy on a long term basis. We help finance any Namibian entrepreneur who meets the qualifying criteria,” said Luvindao.
Furthermore, government recognised the importance of the MSME sector early and in 1997 commissioned the draft of the National Policy on MSMEs in Namibia. The policy was reviewed in 2015 and the Ministry of Industrialization, Trade and SME Development engaged a wide variety of stakeholders for input to the revised policy.