SMEDAN stresses importance of MSMEs
Director-General of Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria SMEDAN Dr Umar Dikko Radda has underscored the need to support the growth and thrive of Small & Medium Enterprises.
He disclosed that there are estimated 41,543,028 million Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises MSMEs that exist in Nigeria who employ 59.6 million or 76.5 per cent of the country’s workforce, contribute 49.78% to national domestic product GDP and account for 7.64% of the country’s exports.
He based this on the report of the National Survey of MSMEs conducted in 2017 by the Nigeria Bureau of Statistics and SMEDAN.
The SMEDAN DG spoke in Umuahia, Abia State capital during the formal closing ceremony of the three day Vocation /Support training for selected members of seven Women Cooperative Societies under the Women-In – Self- Employment Programme WISE-P organized by SMEDAN.
Radda whose address was read by the SMEDAN South East Zonal Coordinator Rev. Canon Levi Anyikwa stated that globally, MSMEs are recognized as engines of socio-economic transformation.
“They offer opportunities to drive jobs and wealth creation as well as income re-distribution within the society. The expectation of SMEDAN is to drive more output from the sub-sector with more careful attention to resources deployment and proper management “.
He listed the objectives of WISE – P as encouraging more women to embrace agro-business development as a viable business option, strengthening entrepreneurship and vocational skills of those already in agric-business cooperatives, facilitating networking among beneficiaries for value addition and inclusive value chain development and encouraging diversification of the economy away from Crude Oil, using agriculture.
The training participants who were selected from seven women Cooperative societies are to be disbursed N230, 000 naira each as Grant with two of them presented with the dummy cheques of N230, 000 naira each during the event held at Ikwuano Plaza Umuahia.
The DG urged the beneficiaries to make full use of the training and the financial Grant to better themselves and their businesses and thus become role models for other women in their communities.
He disclosed that while WISE-P activities concurrently take place in Ekiti and Adamawa states, three others will be reached before the end of the year even as Kogi, Gombe and Ebonyi benefited in 2018 and Kaduna and Akwa Ibom in 2019.
Mrs Precious Ndulaka of The Light Cooperative Society and beneficiary of the training and grant, commended SMEDAN for its gesture to them saying that not only did they receive training free of charge but immediately thereafter given cash grant.
She promised that they would apply the knowledge they acquired and the grant in the management of their businesses, canvassing that the gesture be extended to more women.