The government of Ghana has partnered with the Switzerland government to establish a challenge fund – Remittance Grant Facility (RGF) – aimed at the development of remittance products and services.
Managed by KPMG International Development Advisory Services (IDAS), this is supposed to facilitate the flow of remittances through formal channels to poor and rural Ghanaians and, in the process, enhance the impact of remittances on economic growth and poverty reduction.
The immediate objectives of the RGF are to reduce the cost of remittances and extend their reach to the rural poor. More specifically, the RGF seeks to contribute to the:
- Development of innovative services that extend formal remittance channels to poor and rural Ghanaians throughout Ghana in ways that make the services more affordable and accessible; and
- Development of innovative remittance-backed financial products (such as deposit and savings accounts, insurance and forms of investment) that are affordable and accessible to poor and rural Ghanaians.
To this end, the RGF will provide grants to support the design and pilot testing of products and services that (i) are affordable, (ii) are accessible to target customers and (iii) encourage savings and investment as opposed to consumption.
The RGF will award grants between US$20,000 and US$250,000 to deserving projects. Projects may include both the design and pilot-testing of a product or service.
The RGF is a cost sharing or matching grant fund. Applicants are expected to contribute a minimum of 25 percent of total project costs for smaller grant (up to US$50,000) applications, and a minimum of 50 percent for larger grant applications. Contributions may be in cash (preferred) or in kind.
Financial service providers, non-financial institutions, money transfer operators, mobile network operators, and fintechs. Companies that are interested in RGF funds should be licensed or apply jointly with a licensed company. Start ups are encouraged to apply.
The Fund Manager plans to run competitions within the first two years of the project duration. The application process is in two phases, namely: a project concept note and a full project proposal.
Concept Note Phase:
- All applicants must initially submit a concept note consisting of a brief summary of their business idea. Applicants can access the application form from this link.
- Concept notes will be assessed, once the competition closes, and successful applicants will move to the project proposal phase.
Project Proposal Phase:
- Successful applicants from the concept note phase will be invited to submit a full project proposal. The proposal should provide more detailed information on the project, including financial, business performance and development impact projections.
- During this phase, the Fund Manager will visit the shortlisted applicants to carry out an assessment of their ideas and businesses. Shortlisted applicants may be invited to present their business idea to the Selection Panel.
- An independent Selection Panel will review and select the project proposals to be funded based on the selection criteria.
- The Project Steering Committee will approve the final projects to be funded.
The RGF is financed by Switzerland through the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) while the Ghanaian government will provide support through the Ministry of Finance.
Click here to apply for the fund now. Submission of concept notes ends on the 26th of May, 2017
Download the brochure here to know more
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