The federal government of Nigeria has unveiled plans to create five million jobs by the year 2015 through the expansion of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs).
Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Olusegun Aganga, who made this declaration during a validation workshop on the revised policy on micro, small and medium enterprises and the launch of National Enterprises Development Programme, NEDEP and the Ogun State Council on MSMEs, said the federal government created 32 million indirect jobs through the 17.2 million micro, small and medium scale enterprises in 2012 alone.
Aganga revealed that the federal had concluded arrangements to create additional five million jobs by 2015. The Minister also promised to forward a proposal to the Federal Executive Council (FEC) on the need to ensure production of school uniforms from Made-in-Nigeria fabrics in order to encourage enterprises’ development.
In his own remarks, Alhaji Bature Umar Masari, director -general of Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (Smedan) noted that the National Policy on MSMEs was clear in its designation, evaluation and reviewability from 2013 t0 2015.
Masari siad the targets of the policy include promoting cottage agro and agro-allied enterprises, cottage arts and crafts, textiles and clothing, wood processing and furniture, leather and leather products, basic metal, metal fabrication and engineering enterprises, solid mineral enterprises, electronic and information technology enterprises and building and construction enterprises. The director attributed the success of the policy to several factors such as streamlined and decentralised MDAs at the federal, state and local governments engaged in MSME development, improvement in the capacity of the streamlined organisations to deliver high quality services at scale, institutionalization of public-private dialogue and partnerships in MSME policy implementation. Other factors he mentioned included the provision of funding from the public, private and non-profit sectors at the federal, state and local government levels and measurement and evaluation based on an annual MSME survey to ensure impact assessment and inform additional policy and programme modifications.
Senator Ibikunle Amosun, Governor of Ogun State, who was also in attendance promised that his government would assist genuine entrepreneurs in the “areas of provision of infrastructural facilities and financial assistance through the ongoing Ogun State/Bank of Industry (BoI) loan scheme for MSMEs.”