By Muhammad Nur Tijani
Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN)has reaffirmed commitment and support for development of Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in Nigeria.
The Director General of SMEDAN , Mr Dikko Radda, gave the assurance on Friday in Kano at the agency’s 2021 Board/Management retreat.
According to him, MSMEs remain the engine room for critical economic growth and poverty reduction globally.
Radda said that the retreat would provide them with another solemn opportunities to chart new roadmap toward repositioning the MSMEs subsector in a restructured and and more efficient manner.
“Since the last retreat held in Lagos in 2019, our roles and functions as Nigeria’s prime entrepreneurship development agency has not only become enormous but more responsive in a dynamic and vastly changing global economy.
“It is in this regard that we carefully selected all of you to come and deliberate and to further strategize on ways to reposition the agency toward effective service delivery to the MSMEs sub sector of the Nigerian economy,” he explained.
According to Radda, the ongoing MSMEs Mass Registration Program (MMRP) will provide a veritable platform for information and data collection toward strategic planning of program for the growth and development of the sector.
He said that the agency would launch the 2021 edition of Mindshift Entrepreneurship Program(MEP) in Kano.
MEP was designed to engage the vibrant energy of Nigerian students and youths and channel it into productive venture creation and management of their own businesses.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the theme of the retreat is “Roadmap to inclusive and sustainable MSMEs development.”
The theme was chosen to address prevailing exigencies in the Nigeria MSME ecosystem in relation to the mode of operation.
Radda also restated President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration’s commitment to lifting more Nigerians out of poverty.
In a remark, Minister of State for Trade and Investment, Maryam Katagum, said the recent survey of the National Bureau of Statistics as reported on its website portrayed a worrying picture of the rate of unemployment in the country.
“This is in spite of the strident efforts of government in implementing policies targeted at driving growth and creating employment,” she said.
Represented by Director Planning, Research and Statistics, Babagana Alkali said the best way to arrest the above situation was to have a virile MSME subsector , possibly with special focus on youths and women.
The minister said that 2017 survey jointly by National Bureau of Statistics and SMEDAN revealed that there were 41 million MSMEs in Nigeria and the figure represented over 80 per cent of the total number of Enterprises and accounts for 75 per cent of Nigeria’s total employment base.
According to her, development of the MSME sub- sector is the surest way of addressing the several agitation and very tense security challenges across the country. (NAN)