• Wednesday, June 19, 2024
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BOI targets young entrepreneurs with venture capital

BOI targets young entrepreneurs with venture capital

The Bank of Industry (BoI) has said it has venture capital that guides young entrepreneurs on the choice of business. The development bank also says such capital has helped to nurture entrepreneurs across the country.

Rasheed Olaoluwa, CEO, BoI, said this during a forum on developing African capacity to advance competitiveness and entrepreneurship, held in Abuja.

According to Olaoluwa, who was among the discussants at the event, Nigeria’s current transformation policies are already boosting lending to the private sector and is targeting specific sectors of the economy.

“We are 100 percent development bank that is funded by the private sector. We already have a venture capital that nurture and guide young entrepreneurs on their choice of business. We are already giving credit facilities to specific sectors of the economy that we know will add greater value to the economy and for wealth creation,” he said.

He further said Nigeria had, before the coming on board of the present administration, been importing cement from other parts of the world but has now become a net exporter of the product with one of the largest cement plant in Africa, due largely to the policies of the present administration and incentives to the private sector.

Speaking on opportunities in Africa in general, Akinwunmi Adesina, Nigeria’s minister of agriculture and rural development, said Africa could lead the world with regard to food production, if it explores the advantages of its resources.

“Agriculture is critical for Africa’s future. The size of   agriculture and agribusiness sector is expected to grow to $1trn by 2030.Foreign Direct Investment,(FDI) in agriculture in Africa will likely increase from $10bn in 2005 to $45bn by 2020, “said Adesina.

He said advancing Africa’s economy requires developing economic infrastructure to promote regional trade and integration, in addition to boosting movement of goods and services to promote trade competitiveness.

He further pointed out that ECOWAS has announced their approval of $50m (N8bn) as contributory fund for the studies and the design of the six lanes of Lagos-Abidjan highway project.

Read also: BoI reiterates support for SMEs, to induct successful TEF entrepreneurs

This move, some analysts believe, could advance trade promotion and competitiveness which would also create wealth for proper regional integration, he said.

Africa has demographic advantage as well as natural and human resources that can propel its collective economy.

Jim O’Neil, chairman of the Cities Growth Commission in the United Kingdom, lent credence to this by stating that the continent’s collective GDP estimated at  $1.7 trillion has  the capacity to provide its own market through sustainable value addition and import substitution, given the enormous resources at its disposal.

But for that to happen, Africa has to raise the status of its infrastructure, integrate its regional trade and improve aggressively the quality of its export market, according to Tony Elumelu, founder of Africapitalism.