Kodjo Adedze, Minister of Commerce in charge of the private sector

A banal but caricatural question of the state of mind of Germain Essohouna Meba, president of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Togo (CCIT) during a panel Monday, on the occasion of the first week dedicated to the private sector in Togo.

"When we talk of Aliko Dangote as champion in Nigeria who makes many entrepreneurs dream, we know how there were support behind them, so it is clear that we will need the support of the government," says the president of CCIT.

In reply, Kodjo Adedze, Minister of Commerce in charge of the private sector made it clear that "the government has drawn up a national development plan with the clear desire to support and involve more the local private sector".

"Our country is a land of opportunity and the opportunities are there. It is first and foremost the women and men that we have and who have imagination. When you see young people react, you feel that there is potential, but we must work on this to promote champion companies. When you consider yourself as a small, incapable, you will always be small and incapable until the day you realize that you can", urges the Minister of commerce.

"If you didn't train someone at the base to be champion and suddenly you bring him something to perform, he will take time to react.This is the case of the situation in Togo. The other thing is that our mindset is oriented towards those who are from the foreign private sector such a way that if they don't see them, your company is compared to nothing", criticizes the president of the CCIT.

"This is a state of mind that we have and if we don't care, we are going against the expected ambition to delay the progress we would like to have," he said at the panel on the promotion of champion entrepreneurs in Togo as part of the first week of the private sector.

The exchanges made it possible to identify the necessited characteristics, conditions and the accompaniment so that Togo has champion companies.

"First you need the vision, and beyond that, you need accompaniments and the third thing is this paradigm shift in management," advises Minister Adedze.

According to him, the government is driven by the desire to see Togolese companies progress and continue to grow while benefiting from the sacred boost to move forward and prosper.

"At the bank level, our main objective is to support all those companies that need financing, especially to develop their business," added Mohamed Simpore, Managing Director of Banque Atlantique.

Even if the reality with the bankers is sometimes far from the beautiful speeches in these circumstances.

Several participants expressed the wish to see the government give more support to local entrepreneurs through various types of facilitation. This is one of the sine qua non conditions to have champions like Dangote or Jack Ma, CEO of Ali baba group expected in Lome November 14.

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