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Chamber seeks private sector involvement in disbursement of N220b MSMEs intervention fund

By Itunu Ajayi, Abuja   |   22 January 2015   |   4:18 am  

THE Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ABUCCIMA) has urged the Federal Government to involve the private sector in the articulating the conditions for accessing the N220 billion set aside to boost the Micro, Small, Medium and Enterprises (MSMEs) Intervention Fund in the country.

   The Vice-President, Public Relations, ABUCCIMA, Jude Igwe, stated this on Monday while briefing journalists on the inauguration of the President and council members and presentation of 2014 award to some dignitaries in Abuja.

    Igwe stated that the Chambers had shortlisted some Nigerians who had shown ‘uncommon resilience and innovation’ in their various economic engagements for awards by the chamber. He said that given the private sector’s role in the economy, its involvement in working out modalities to access the fund was imperative.

   His words, “The N220 billion Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises’ launched by President Goodluck Jonathan is a policy in the right direction.”

He said that Small and Micro Enterprises (SMEs) accounted for a sizeable percentage of employment opportunities project under the Federal Government’s Vision 20: 20:20.

    Igwe said that Federal Government’s supports for SMEs in the past had not yielded desired results because stakeholders had not been carried along in their formulation and implementation. He expressed dissatisfaction with what he described as multiple taxation and revenue collection on SMEs in the FCT.

Igwe listed high interest rates, poor infrastructure, poor funding, and multiple taxation, lack of access to raw materials as some of the challenges facing SMEs in FCT.

   He advised Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to develop a reliable feedback mechanism with the chamber for constant review of the impact of SMEs on government’s policies and programmes.

 Igwe called on the government to allocate more funds to Research and Development, especially in those involving the SMEs.



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