Path to industrial growth, by UNIDO
As Nigerian grapples with the problems of poverty and growing unemployment, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), has called on both the Federal and State Governments to increase their support for entrepreneurship and industrial development by putting in place more business –friendly policies and incentives.
The Officer in Charge, UNIDO Regional Office, Nigeria, Dr. Chuma Ezedinma, made the call at the UNIDO HP LIFE Stakeholders Workshop in Abuja.
Ezedinma noted that entrepreneurship and industrialisation were two important ingredients for tackling poverty and unemployment, adding that UNIDO would continue to support and partner the government and private sector in order to promote Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development (ISID) in the country .
He said: “Entrepreneurship and industrialization are two important ingredients for stimulating economic growth, job creation and poverty reduction in both developed economies and economies in transition including Nigeria. In fact, successful small businesses are the primary engines for job creation, income growth, and poverty reduction. Small businesses broaden the base of participation in society, create jobs, decentralise economic power, and give people a stake in the future.
“Therefore, government’s support for entrepreneurship and industrial development in Nigeria is a crucial strategy for economic development. Government needs to encourage entrepreneurship and small businesses through its tax policy (corporate tax rate reductions, tax credits for investment and tax holidays), regulatory policy (simpler regulatory processes and reducing the cost of compliance with government regulations), access to capital (here the proposed Development Commercial banks and can be of assistance), and the legal protection of property rights. ”
In his presentation, the Entrepreneurship Expert , and Team Leader , UNIDO HP LIFE Project, UNIDO Regional Office, Nigeria, Francis Ukoh, said, the UNIDO HP LIFE Project “is in line with the Federal Government’s strategy as outlined in the National Enterprise Development Programme (NEDEP) to combat high youth and women unemployment and enhance the growth and competitiveness of Nigeria’s private sector to generate sustainable employment opportunities for Nigerian youth and women by fostering directly or indirectly the creation of new enterprises and the expansion of existing ones” According to a former Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Abba Ruma, the country is ready to work with UNIDO to ensure that Nigerians benefits maximally from the agency’s global expertise in the area of entrepreneurship and industrial development.
Another participant and Value Business Manager, English Africa, HP Incorporated, Adewunmi Akinlade , said: “We are excited about this stakeholders meeting which is part of the deepening of our partnership with UNIDO in promoting entrepreneurship development in Nigeria and across the world. HP is ready to provide the needed support in collaboration with UNIDO to strengthen the project implementation.”
In his remarks, the Deputy Director, Development Finance, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Uji Amedu, commended UNIDO for its effort towards promoting entrepreneurship and industrial development globally, adding that the apex bank was committed to supporting government’s economic diversification efforts through the implementation of various laudable intervention schemes.
In order to ensure that beneficiaries of the UNIDO HP Entrepreneurship Project have access to fund at a single digit interest rate, the Regional Head, North Central Region , Bank of Industry (BOI) , Jack Kings, said BOI was ready support UNIDO as a trusted partner in enterprise and industrial development.
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