DBN’s lack of presence in all regions hampers SME growth – Masua

Martin Endjala

Swapo Member of Parliament, Patience Masua says that the current situation where the Development Bank of Namibia (DBN) do not have visibility in all the regions across the country, presents a significant challenge of inequity as the DBN’s presence is not uniformly established across all regions of Namibia.

“Our young people from the regions are excluded. Young people from Omaheke (Epukiro, Vergenoeg, etc.), young people from Kharas, Zambezi, and all other regions are excluded.

This geographical discrepancy excludes a critical sector of our society, particularly the rural and peri-urban youth, from availing themselves of the financial support and developmental opportunities provided by the bank,” she said.

Masua argues that the lack of accessibility deprives young entrepreneurs in remote areas of the chance to participate fully in the economic growth of the nation.

She stressed that the government must address the discrepancy and work towards expanding the reach of the DBN to ensure that all Namibian youth, regardless of their geographic location, have equal access to resources necessary for their entrepreneurial endeavours.

She wants DBN to be accessible to all young people, especially those who need it most. Emphasising that fostering inclusivity, can empower the youth and harness their potential as active contributors to the economic prosperity of Namibia.

She said Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are important for the growth and diversification of the economy, adding that they create job opportunities, stimulate innovation, and contribute to the overall economic growth of the country.

The MP highlighted that many young people have an appetite for business, the talent, skills, ideas, brilliance, and all the ingredients to build a successful business.

They just do not have the funding or the degree. In light of this diversity, she says they are actively looking into comprehensive strategies to ensure inclusivity and support for all young entrepreneurs, in addition to the skills-based lending facility that the DBN offers.

Additionally, by providing resources, support, and guidance to Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises, they are paving the way for a brighter future for the next generation of entrepreneurs in Namibia.

Meanwhile, over the last five years (April 2018 to March 2023), DBN has approved 808 loans to SMEs worth N$824.5 million.

At the same time, the total number of loans approved was 1035, with a value of N$5.3 billion. DBN classifies businesses with an annual turnover of less than N$10 million as SMEs.

Related Posts