25 November 2014, Abuja – The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Olusegun Aganga said yesterday that the Federal Government is working with the Nigerian Electricity Regulation Commission (NERC) to reduce the high cost of doing business for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSMEs) through the reduction of electricity tariff.
Aganga who spoke at the opening ceremony of MSMEs Summit in Abuja, said the government has also reduced the cost of business registration with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) for MSMEs by 60 per cent.
He said: “(Small, Medium Scale Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria) SMEDAN has increased its footprint from 13 states to being present in all the states in Nigeria in just five months. This has ensured that we are able to reach all Nigerians in each local government area in the country.
“Additionally, SMEDAN has decentralised its operations to ensure 80 per cent of its staff are domiciled in the states and only 20 per cent in the headquarters. This measure has also ensured that our services are spread across the country. We have identified and supporting at least one product in the 774 local government areas of competitive and comparative advantage.
“To this effect, we have formed over 55,000 MSMEs cooperative society in Nigeria, and registered them with the Corporate Affairs Commission CAC in order to assist thousands of MSMEs have better access to finance and access to business support services.
“The 2010 MSMEs collaborative survey revealed that the majority of MSMEs particularly the micro enterprises only sell their products within their local government area. “Through NEDEP, we are intervening to broaden market access for Nigerian MSMEs.”
The Director General, SMEDAN, Bature Umar Masari said the need to access the contribution of MSME subsector to the Nigerian economy partially instigated the National MSME survey jointly conducted by SMEDAN and the NBS in 2010.
The report clearly shows tgat there are over 17million MSMEs operating within the length and breath of the country. The survey also evidenced showed that the 17million MSMEs had a cumulative employment of over 32 million.
– The Nation