Royal father urges investment in infrastructure to boost entrepreneurship
The Nigerian government has been advised to earmark a significant percentage of its budget towards supporting entrepreneurial activities in the country, especially in the digitized COVID-19 era.
Igwe Oranu Chris Chidume, Eze Ana-Ukwu, Eze Igulube of Omor in Ayamelum Local Government Area of Anambra State, gave this advice at the 4th International Conference of the Faculty of Management Sciences, Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University, Igbariam Campus.
In a keynote address at the conference titled ‘Entrepreneurship as the engine of economic development: Nigeria’s experience in COVID-19 era’, Igwe Chidume said no country can survive without entrepreneurs.
He observed that the COVID-19 pandemic awakened Nigeria to the realization that it must keep innovating and evolving to stay afloat if the country would continue to survive.
Igwe Chidume, who is also the chairman of Krisoral Group of Companies and recipient of the National Productivity Order of Merit Awards, noted that there have been significant efforts in digitization of businesses as COVID-19 has led to upsurge in e-commerce and accelerated digital acceptance.
The traditional ruler harped on the need for entrepreneurs to take advantage of the digital space for the marketing of goods and services, which can only be done with improved infrastructure.
He explained that digitization has been found useful in online marketing for goods and services, online meetings for business associates, among others.
“As lockdown became the new normal, businesses and consumers increasingly went digital, providing and purchasing more goods and services online, raising e-commerce share of global retail trade from 14 percent in 2019 to about 17 percent in 2020,” he said.
To survive the threat of COVID-19, Igwe Chidume advised Nigerians to patronize locally-made goods.
According to him, Nigeria runs an import-dependent economy as everything used in the country is imported, including nail-cutter or even the button on clothes.
“So, the way out is for the government and all citizens to consume what we produce and produce what we consume,” he said.