• Friday, July 12, 2024
businessday logo


Cross River to benefit from FG’s $671m creative, digital economy investment

FG, Cross River partner against proliferation of small arms, light weapons

The Federal Government has secured a whooping $671 million investment fund for the creative and digital economy sector, BusinessDay has learnt.

Fegho Umunubo, Special Assistant to the President (Office of the Vice President) on Digital and Creative Economy, stated this during a Digital and Creative Economy Stakeholder’s Roundtable held over the weekend in Calabar, Cross River State Capita.

Umunubo, who said Cross River State, would benefit from the fund, also noted that, “Every State will benefit from the $671 million investment fund”, adding, “I’m hoping Cross River State will also benefit from the fund in terms of access to finance, infrastructure and training.”

The Special Adviser to the President, said the fund would ensure the industry is strengthened at the State level to eradicate the idea of japa (relocating abroad).

“There was a time when people moved from Calabar for instance to Lagos and now to abroad because they don’t have the necessary working tools and market. However, we want you to stay here and improve the economy instead of japa.

“The last time I was here, I mentioned to the Governor that it won’t be my last in Calabar and today, I am here and it won’t be my last as well – I’ll try my best in helping the state grow in the digital and creative economy.

“What is obtainable in Lagos is different from what is obtainable in Kano, Enugu, Cross River – we’ve been walking State to State to drive development across board.

“We’ve supported over 7 comedy shows, including Alibaba and Seyi Law. If there are comedy shows in Calabar and you want us to support, please reach out to us.

“We wanted to understand the industry, we used the film sector and we were able to give N1.5 million to them. For the second badge, it is for everyone – comedy, drama, film, music, etc.

“We need to start thinking about the business of creatives. A lot of creatives don’t think about the business aspect. Another thing we have to focus on is infrastructure.”

Responding on behalf of Cross River State Government, Great Ogban, Director General of the Cross River State Microfinance and Enterprise Development Agency (MEDA), said the roundtable was to discuss the challenges facing the sector.

“We are committed to ensuring that the Governor, His Excellency, Senator (Prince) Bassey Edet Otu’s passion for the digital and creative sector come to fruition. We are looking at the jobs that will be created, economic growth and the people effect.

“Our job at MEDA is to teach you the marketing aspect of your job. It is to give that guy who has talent the ability to market his/her skills. We are launching the Cross River State Entrepreneurship Board with registration of N10,000, to convert talents into business”, he said.