• Saturday, May 18, 2024
businessday logo

BusinessDay

GIZ pilots TRIMS in Ogun to eradicate illegal payments, bottlenecks on trade routes

businessday-icon

The German Agency for International Corporation (GIZ) has launched a business-promotional scheme tagged “Trade Route Incident Mapping System (TRIMS) targeted at eradicating trade bottlenecks and illegal checkpoints that affect quick and easy haulage of goods across the country, thereby retards competitiveness and ease of doing business on Nigeria trade routes.

TRIMS, piloted in Nigeria on Monday by GIZ in conjunction with Ogun State government and Ogun State Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, in furtherance of GIZ implementation of Pro-poor Growth and Promotion of Employment in Nigeria (SEDIN) aimed at tackling barriers affecting the growth of Micro, Small and Medium-scale Enterprises (MSMEs).

According to the initiators of the project, TRIMS will be used to collate trade incidents and unauthorised payments being demanded from traders and commercial drivers on Nigerian trade routes by law enforcement agencies through structured text messages (SMS), serving as a legal and economic platform to track down and reduce such incidents in the future.

Speaking at the launch of TRIMS in Abeokuta, Alex Werth, head of unit, GIZ-SEDIN Programme, disclosed that the project “is to promote the ease of doing business in the country and level of Micro, Small and Medium-scale Enterprises (MSMEs) and small traders competitiveness,” saying “it is aimed at combatting trade bottlenecks along Nigerian trade routes.

“GIZ, in conjunction with the Ogun State government, represented by the Office of the Special Adviser to the Ogun State Governor on Millenium Development Goals (MDGs) and the Ogun State Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (OGUNCCIMA), is launching an initiative called the Trade Route Incident Mapping System (TRIMS).

“It is aimed at combatting trade bottlenecks along Nigerian trade routes. The TRIMS project will be implemented in collaboration with a multi-stakeholder consortium consisting of civil society organisations, faith-based organisations, mobile network operators, media and other relevant and committed actors from the public and private.

“After the success of the pilot phase of the project in Ogun state, it is planned to scale up TRIMS in partnership with key federal stakeholders to the federal level.”

Meanwhile, Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State has approved the immediate disbursement of N50 million soft loan to market women and men operating in the state as part of the state contribution to small and medium-scale enterprises development, just as he pledged to constitute marketing board that will oversee trade and marketing operations in the state.

The governor, who lamented the undoing of some unnamed members of the State House of Assembly whom he described as “enemies of progress in Ogun State” that blocked state government from obtaining CBN-facilitated MSMEs development fund to boost SMEs in the state, said the N50 million loan was to quickly provide relief for small businesses.

The state government had resolved, against all odds, to stimulate the growth of MSMEs across the state with a worthwhile monetary relief and technical suppprt “even if some people are working against government’s moves to secure money from the CBN’s MSMEs development fund meant for states collection,” he said.

RAZAQ AYINLA