WAGES Regional Entrepreneurship Report


WAGES Project

Publication Type:
Year Published:
Global Affairs Canada
Burkina Faso, Ghana, Guinea
Olivia Nasewicz ([email protected])
Economic Opportunities, Gender Equality, Self-Employment, Technical and Vocational Education and Training

The West Africa Governance and Economic Sustainability in Extractive Areas Project (WAGES) implemented in Burkina Faso, Ghana, and Guinea has made economic development in extractive communities in West Africa a top priority of its programming. The project recognized a lot of potential in working closely with small-scale entrepreneurs in extractive communities. This decision was predominantly attributed to informal businesses being one of the main drivers of trade and economy in West Africa. Over the course of the past five years, the WAGES project supported the capacity building of more than 6,000 entrepreneurs in various areas of entrepreneurship; this included support on business plans development, financial literacy, access to financing, burgeoning market access for female and youth-led businesses, and mentorship and incubation. This report explores the various business development services used, as well as the different partnerships and contexts that may affect the process of economic growth in the communities in each country. One must be mindful while reading that each of these countries in West Africa has a completely different social fabric, geographical context, as well as professional and educational capacity. At a glance, in Ghana, Guinea, and Burkina Faso, between 30% and 60% of entrepreneurs trained through the project reported a growth in their businesses, and the percentage of women and youth supported by WAGES reporting decision-making power over their economic occupation is between 85% and 94%.