ENUGU, Nigeria (VOICE OF NAIJA)- The Federal Government of Nigeria on Friday inaugurated the National Council on Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to ease ways of doing small businesses across the country.
Charles Odii, the director-general of the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN), made this known while briefing reporters at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Vice President Kashim Shettima inaugurated the council.
“The council will cascade to the different states, and at the state levels, all state governors are the heads and chairmen of this council.
”And, as SMEDAN, we will be the secretariat, and our job basically is to make sure that this council runs, small businesses can come and get everything they need to start, grow and scale their businesses,” Mr Odii said.
Mr Odii said Mr Shettima directed the DG of SMEDAN and the Senior Special Assistant to the President on MSMEs and Job Creation, Office of the Vice President, to give him the council’s progress report every two weeks.
The DG said SMEDAN would write to all the state governors to inform them about the council’s operation following its inauguration.
”We lost three million small businesses from our last statistics, and this loss of small businesses borders around insecurity, access to finance, climate and global competitiveness for small businesses.
”So in terms of access to finance, we have announced a N5 billion, nine per cent no collateral loan for small businesses across the country in partnership with the Sterling Bank. We got N30 billion from Access Bank as well as another fund for the youth and women,” he stated.
On his part, Temitola Adekunle-Johnson, Senior Special Assistant to the President on MSMEs and Job Creation, said the inauguration of the council further demonstrated the commitment of President Bola Tinubu’s administration to create an enabling environment for small businesses to thrive.
Also, Dele Oye, the national president of the Nigeria Association of Chambers of Commerce, commended Mr Shettima for his commitment to developing MSMEs.