News & Analysis: SMEs

A More Inclusive Recovery for SMEs and the Informal Sector

“While there are significant long-term challenges—including the absence of technological infrastructure, digital literacy and skills—in the short term, COVID-19 interventions by governments need to include innovation promotion strategies for SMEs.”

via African Center for Economic Transformation

Deepening access to capital for Nigerian MSMEs during a pandemic

“While Nigeria has, so far, seemingly been spared the public health onslaught created by COVID-19, the country has not escaped the urgent economic crisis created by the pandemic. Worse, hardest hit have been the micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), whose operations are largely traditional and dependent on physical contact with their consumers and partners.”

via Brookings Institution

Rwanda: Businesses to close at 6:00 PM as gov’t tightens COVID-19 restrictions

“All business operations, including restaurants, shops, markets and malls, will, effective January 5, close operations at 6:00 PM, as part of efforts to slow the spread of new COVID-19 infections in the country. “

via The New Times

Digital Disruption in Africa – Mapping Innovations for the AfCFTA in Post COVID-19 Times

“The rise in ecommerce particularly with the onset of COVID-19, signals a strong foundation upon which to leverage 4IR to support digitised inter-regional trade, large scale industrialisation, and the creation of a vibrant African economy.”


Survey reveals 95 percent of African SMEs did not receive government aid during COVID-19 pandemic

“In March 2020, the African Union created the Rollo Africa Business Simulation Programme to support SMEs and the informal sector. Of the 490 businesses that applied the programme, 93 percent reported their business was heavily impacted by the pandemic and 95 percent testified they never received any government support to combat the economic downturn.”

via African Union

Rwanda seeks to turn around manufacturing amid COVID-19

“Led by Prime Minister Edouard Ngirente, the government initiated a ‘manufacturing acceleration committee’ that is going around on ground to assess the sector. That result is expected to see change in policy actions that support local industries. Already, the new investment code establishes a financial scheme for SMEs.”

via The New Times

Regions Apart: How South Africa and Nigeria responded to COVID-19

“While both countries have taken extensive economic assistance and recovery measures, the economic impact of the pandemic is unlikely to be eradicated as rapidly as a vaccine is expected to eradicate the disease. In both countries, job losses will no doubt increase existing poverty and inequality and will therefore require urgent attention from government.”


Morocco receives €1.3 billion in German financial support

“Morocco has received €1.3 billion in German financial support which evidences the close cooperation ties between the two countries, Morocco’s foreign ministry said in a statement. Out of that total of 1.387 billion euros, Germany had donated €202 million euros, while 717 million went to the anti-COVID-19 fund and the state-owned national guarantee fund.”

via The North Africa Post

East Africa: COVID-19 invades banks, slows down earnings

“Banks’ performance was largely impacted by increased provision on loans and advances in the wake of increased risk of credit default associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.”

via The East African

Lockdown economics in South Africa: Social assistance and the Ramaphosa stimulus package

“The Ramaphosa COVID-19 stimulus package, originally announced on April 21, is huge, amounting to approximately $26 billion, or 10 percent of the economy’s GDP. As a share of GDP, South Africa’s package represents the largest in the emerging markets.”

via Brookings Institution