• Friday, June 14, 2024
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NASME to launch N1bn empowerment fund for MSME development

NASME to launch N1bn empowerment fund for MSME development

The Nigeria Association of Small and Medium Entrepreneurs (NASME), is set to launch a one billion Naira youth and women investment and empowerment fund in August as part of its 2023 Youth Empowerment Conference.

This was disclosed by Abdulrasheed Yerima, president and chairman of the Governing Council of NASME ,while speaking during the celebration of the 2023 International MSME Day.

Yerima said Micro Small Medium Scale Enterprises (MSMEs) in Nigeria suffer numerous problems such as financing, digital maturity, security, productivity, among other things which affects efficiency, competitiveness, and growth.

He said despite the federal government’s efforts in addressing some of these challenges through the implementation of financial inclusion programs and digitalization initiatives, there is still a significant gap that needs to be bridged, particularly for credit underserved MSMEs.

“While digitalization plays a vital role, we must also address the crucial issue of funding; empowering these small businesses is essential for shaping the future of Nigeria,” he said.

He added that NASME will also organize the ECOWAS MSME Conference in November in collaboration with the ECOWAS Commission , Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (SMEDAN), the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment (FMITI), Ministry of Foreign Affairs(MFA), Nigeria Export Promotion Council (NEPC ), Nigeria Investment Promotion Council (NIPC), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the Organized Private Sector of Nigeria (OPSN ), Bank of Industry (BOI), Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN), Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) and other stakeholders.

He said the international MSME Day is dedicated to recognising and raising awareness about the crucial role of MSMEs as drivers of economic growth, poverty reduction, and job creation, adding that it also serves as a platform to shed light on the challenges faced by MSMEs, such as limited access to funding, quality education, technology, skill development, and market opportunities.

Yerima said reports from the United Nations, shows that MSMEs account for up to 90 percent of businesses globally, generating 70 percent of jobs and making substantial contributions to the global GDP which highlights the immense impact that MSMEs have on both local and global economies.

“As NASME, we commemorate World MSME Day annually, recognizing the immense value that MSMEs bring to our nation. Let us continue working together to empower and uplift our MSMEs, fostering an environment where they can thrive and contribute to the growth and prosperity of Nigeria,” he said.