During the inauguration of the “Maison de l’Entreprise” (Company House) introduced by the Ivory Coast employers, the president of Ivory Coast, Alassane Ouattara invited the banks of Ivory Coast to get more involved in SMEs.
According to Mr. Ouattara, financial institutions give less interest to SMEs and consequently, “they should change strategy”.
According to the Ivory Coast president, “SMEs are at the heart of the economic growth as completely shown emerging countries in the world“.
But without adequate financing, “the growth of the SMEs is slowed down”, he continued.
President Alassane declared that many efforts remain to make as for the intermediate mission between the national savings and the needs of financing.
“Several recent studies underlined that the Ivory Coast financial sector does not fully answer its intermediary mission between the national savings and the needs of financing of the economy“, he noticed.
And he added that: “the access to financial services still remains too much restricted for all the economic actors, except for the big exporting companies and the subsidiaries of international companies“.
Ouattara who considered that the Ivory Coast financial sector does not contribute enough to the financing of the State economy, recognized however “the beginning of improvement during these last two years“.
For the Ivory Coast president: “just like the blood that irrigates the heart, bank loans should irrigate our economy. If the flow is not sufficient enough, then the heart gets out of breath just like the economic growth of a country“.
Mr. Ouattara besides regretted the concentration of loans and deposits on some big companies as well as a strong concentration of banking services in the categories of population with high income.
He underlined that the bancarisation rate of Ivory Coast (approximately 12 %) remains sensibly lower than the average of sub-Saharan Africa.
Original text by: Blaise AKAME