SMEDA is a government agency responsible for coordinating SME’s activities in Sierra Leone, established by an act of parliament in 2016.
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The Sierra Leone Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency is a government entity established under the SMEDA Act No.11 of 2016. The Act was developed through a stakeholder’s consultation and a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed between the Bank of Sierra Leone, the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Trade and Industry and the International Labour Organization (ILO) to fine tuned the SME policy and strategy that was developed in 2014.
The Act gives the Agency the mandate to formulate and coordinate policies that will facilitate the integration and harmonization of various public and private sector initiatives, for the promotion, development and regulation of the Micro and Small Enterprises to become key Industries of tomorrow. The Agency is also mandated with the responsibility to coordinates the implementation of development programmers for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) across all related Ministries, Agencies and Associations. The Agency acts as the central point of reference for research and data dissemination on SMEs and entrepreneurs, as well as provides business advisory services for SMEs and entrepreneurs throughout the country.
The Micro and Small Enterprises (MSEs) occupy a very strategic position in the development of this country. They cut across all sectors of the Sierra Leone economy and have been identified as major contributors to employment creation and income generation. Micro and Small Enterprises are therefore a major vehicle for poverty reduction and wealth creation.
Successive governments have, therefore, over the years supported growth and development of the sector by implementing targeted interventions and programmes aimed at making it more vibrant. However, the full potential of the sector has not been realized as there have been several organizations attending to the MSE sector both in the public and private sector causing overlaps, duplication and confusion. The MSE Act of 2015 now gives the Agency the legal power to address this problem.