NGO, Company Partner to Promote Financial Inclusion, Create Jobs

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Addis Ababa November 3/2020 (ENA) STEMpower and Visa have established partnership to drive financial inclusion and job creation in Ethiopia for innovators and aspiring entrepreneurs.

The collaboration leveraging STEMpower existing capabilities within the country to educate innovators and aspiring entrepreneurs by equipping them with financial education to better prepare them in establishing and running TechSMEs was announced today.

The three-year program will bring tailored skills to two distinct groups of micro business owners to establish and grow their businesses. It will run from September 2020 to August 2023.

STEMpower Executive Director, Kidist Gebreamlak said incubation and acceleration centers will foster training to provide entrepreneurial mindset and equip participants with the necessary skills to bridge the gap between innovator and entrepreneur.

Visa in this partnership will provide soft skill training, particularly in digital banking and finance, she added.

“The very purpose of STEMpower is to create economic development through technology. We believe technology is the bedrock for any development. So we focus on creating this economic development supported by technology,” the executive director elaborated.

Digital Transformation Coordinator at the Office of the Prime Minister, Myriam Said stated that the government is putting entrepreneurs and the private sector at the center of “Digital Ethiopia 2020” in order to ensure that the youth is equipped with the necessary technological skills.

“This kind of partnerships is not only crucial to drive Ethiopia to a digital economy but also to contribute to the economy. The partnership will foster the next generation, create jobs, and enable us to have TechSMEs,” she noted.

ICT is the priority economic sector within the Home Grown Economic Reform, Myriam said, adding that “with the new laws on opening up the banking sector, telecom liberalization and FinTech more jobs will be created.”

STEMpower, an international non-profit NGO, has established 48 STEM centers and 2 FabLabs in Ethiopia.