The Citizen Entrepreneurial Development Agency (CEDA) said it managed to improve collections in 2013 although it managed to fight the entitlement mentality embedded in project promoters and Batswana in general.
CEDA, the government underpinned development financial institution, managed to recover P132million against a target of P124million for 2013.
Chief Executive Officer, Thabo Thamane, said in an interview that one of the key priorities in 2013 was financial sustainability by collecting more debt in a bid to revolve the fund in an effort to ease reliance on shareholder subvention.
“It has not only been about wealth creation for promoters. It is also about spreading that wealth around. There has been singular focus on reducing the turnaround time, as well as improving the customer experience and offering,” stated the CEO.
According to CEDA, during the financial year ended of October 2013, it has financed 119 projects valued at P127.9 million. Services sector led with 72 projects valued at P59.3 million, while 27 projects in property and manufacturing were financed to the tune of P43.2 million 20 projects valued at P25.4 million were for agribusiness.
This was a reduction to the number of projects financed in the same period in 2012 where 197 projects valued at P197.9 million were given access to funding. Agribusiness recorded large percentage of reduction. In 2012, agribusiness was leading at 89 projects valued at P74.8 million, followed by 71 projects valued at P63.1 million for services and property while manufacturing received P60 million for 37 projects.
“The reduction in Agribusiness reflects the challenges experienced by the beef sector and the prevailing drought in 2013. Recent economic data has shown significant growth in the financial and business services sector, the trade and hotel and restaurant sectors, construction and agribusiness,” stated Thamane.
“We believe that as the economy recovers, the services sector in general will see significant growth in the next year or 2. These sectors will be further boosted by improving Government revenue as the global economy recovers,” he added.
Some of the challenges that CEDA has to deal with include the entitlement mentality of promoters as applicants believe they are entitled to receive funding by virtue of being Batswana.
“This manifests in the form of poor quality project proposals submitted for adjudication. Even when the project proposals are rejected due to non-viability, the promoter would appeal several instances without addressing the reasons advanced for rejecting the application,” he stated.
“The Agency from time to time engages with promoters to encourage them to pay their loans in order for the Agency to revolve the funds. Public education campaigns are also on-going to educate Batswana on the requirements of CEDA and how they may access the facilities on offer”.