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BUSINESS TODAY 26 January 2023

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2 NEWS 26.1.2023 TRADEMALTA organised its third trade visit to Ghana in January 2023, following previous visits in 2017 and 2020. 25 companies join the business delegation following a call for applica- tions was issued in September 2022. Sectors covered included advisory, environmental services, civil engi- neering and construction, mechanical and electrical engineering, ICT, train- ing and education, manufacturing of food and beverage, manufacturing, health and medical related services, oil and gas and various stakeholders. A total of 45 delegates travelled with the business delegation. The trade mission took place be- tween 16 and 20 January 2023 and was held in Accra. The business delegation was invited to join the 3rd Malta – Ghana busi- ness forum which was attended by over 200 Ghanaian invitees. Senior Ghanaian government ministers as well as established businesspeople, se- rial entrepreneurs, and various stake- holders were all in attendance. The forum was addressed by both trade ministers, distinguished guests and industry representatives. The forum, which was held at the Movenpick Hotel in Accra, was fol- lowed by the signing of three mem- oranda of understanding involving three Maltese companies; Evolve Ltd, Overseas HealthCare Ltd, Omnigene Medical Technologies. The forum was organised in collab- oration with several Ghanaian stake- holders including, the Ghana Invest- ment Promotion Centre (GIPC), the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCC) and the Ghana Free Zone Au- thority (GFZA). Following the business forum, TradeMalta organised a successful business-to-business session. More Ghanaian companies were invited to join this networking session with the Maltese business delegation in a more informal setting to discuss po- tential business opportunities. The b2b session was then followed by a networking lunch where Maltese and Ghanaian delegates had further op- portunities to discuss other forms of collaboration. The business delegates were also in- vited to attend the official inaugura- tion of the High Commission of Malta in Accra. The event which was hosted by Ian Borg, Minister for Foreign and European Affairs and Trade, and High Commissioner Jean Claude Galea Mallia. At the event, which was attended by dignitaries and Ghanaian business people, several Malta-made products were put on display. The High Com- mission of Malta in Accra has also been remodelled with the business community in mind as it has various meeting rooms that can be used by the Maltese business community to hold meetings. TradeMalta concludes a successful business mission to Ghana TradeMalta organised a successful business-to-business session and invited more Ghanaian companies to join the Maltese business delegation in a more informal setting to discuss potential business opportunities VISA, a global leader in digital payments, announced the ex- tension of the Visa Innovation Program Europe in Malta. is fintech pilot-centered collaboration platform, today live in Bulgaria, Greece, Turkey and Spain, and in which Visa has been partnering since 2018 with early-stage venture capital fund Eleven Ventures, and open innovation accelerators Crowd- policy and Hackquarters, is de- signed to help early stage Fin- tech scale up and supercharge their value proposition, while engaging with Visa, its clients, and partners. With Open Call expected to launch in March 2023, Fintech in Malta will be able to submit their applications to be part of the 2023 edition cohort. e awarded candidates will be- come part of the Visa Innova- tion Program Europe, which during the following 6-months will support their growth, pro- viding them with access to training resources, mentoring and investors. ey will also be able to tap into a network of proof-of-con- cept partners such as banks, e-money institutions, mer- chants, and other high-profile organizations, to test and val- idate their propositions and reach the commercialization stage faster. Sevi Vassileva, VP and Gener- al Manager for Malta, Cyprus, Malta and Israel at Visa said: "Visa is constantly innovating to make new and future pay- ment methods and channels better and more accessible to all. is is what guides our ap- proach to collaborating with Fintech to create new ways to pay and be paid. We are excited to bring this program to Malta with our partners, demonstrat- ing our continued investment in fintech talent in the markets where we operate the program, and beyond. I'm incredibly proud to see how much the Visa Innovation program has and continues to expand as an established regional program across Europe and looking for- ward to welcome the Fintech in Malta interested in becoming part of it." Michael Psalidas, Managing Director at Crowdpolicy said: "Visa Innovation Program Eu- rope continues to pave the way for the development of part- nerships between startups, Visa and financial institutions, giv- ing the chance in more fintech companies with the launch in Malta to flourish in a dynamic ecosystem with exciting oppor- tunities and potential for fintech entrepreneurs". Since its inception in 2018, the Visa Innovation Program, Europe has opened hubs in Bulgaria, Greece, Turkey and Spain, evaluating over 900 ap- plicants in 62 countries with 72 selected Fintechs. ey generated 70 proofs of concept thanks in large part to Visa network partner introduc- tions. To date the Program has de- livered a total of 1.300 hours of mentoring and the participating Fintech have entered 84 rounds of investment, receiving over 350 million euros in funding. One of the first participants in the Program, Payhawk, became a unicorn last year. Bea Larregle, Regional Man- aging Director Southern Europe at Visa: "We are determined to support collaborative innova- tion, which is a key enabler to build more inclusive economies and to unlock economic growth. After the great results achieved by the program in Spain, Greece, Turkey and Bulgaria, I am glad to see it expanding further with Malta, so we can discover and empower more local fintech tal- ents that will shape the future of payments and commerce in Europe". Visa strengthens local fintech ecosystem, expands Visa Innovation Program Europe to Malta The Visa Innovation Program, since it's inception In numbers 4 Hubs 900+ Applicants 70+ Selected fintechs 62 Countries Applications from 70 Proof of concepts 1300 Hours of mentorship 113 Borderless days 80+ Investor introductions 350+ Million dollars raised by the fintechs in total* 1 Unicorn Worked on delivering solutions addressing 4 key challenges Advancing next-gen payments experiences Empowering SMEs Unlocking new payment flows Building a smart and sustainable future *Funding raised by the participating Fintech companies after joining the program either independently or through connections of Program Managers (Eleven, Crowdpolicy, and Hackquarters).

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