National Association of Small and Medium Enterprises, NASME on Tuesday advised the President-elect, Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, to revive small scale businesses in the country.
Executive Secretary of the association, Mr Eke Ubiji, gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.
Ubiji said that sustained and positive policy on Micro, Small, Medium Enterprises (MSME) would enhance the economic development of the nation.
He said that Buhari’s experience in governance was an added advantage to have a better understanding of the needs of the real sector and its strategic place in sustaining national development.
According to him, for Nigeria to attain its goal of becoming one of the top economies in the world, special attention should be given to MSMEs’, a critical sector that would drive the economy effectively.
“The President-elect should give cognisance to MSMEs’ by addressing the various challenges facing it because that sector will help to generate employment for its teeming unemployed youths.
“The challenges of infrastructure, transportation and power are issues critical to the survival and growth of viable MSMEs’.
“The issue of multiple taxes should also be addressed. If you listen to entrepreneurs in different parts of the country, they are saying the same thing.
“Federal Government is charging tax, states and local governments are also charging, all on a sector that is not moving forward,” he said.
He also urged the president-elect to improve on President Goodluck Jonathan administration’s efforts in the area of rail transportation and access to finance for MSMEs’ in the country.
“Most critically, the issue of access to finance is grinding MSMEs’ to a halt. President Goodluck Jonathan did something very spectacular on March 23, 2015.
“He launched a new development finance institution for the country, called Development Bank of Nigeria. It is a good initiative and I expect the president-elect to pay attention to it.
“Because it is a bank that is set up to address the issue of access to finance as it affects MSMEs’ in the country.
“You don’t throw away the baby with the bath water.
“Jonathan may have tried and failed in some areas but there were some things he did that were good and commendable,” Ubiji said.
Besides, he advised Buhari to constitute a strong and knowledgeable economic management team that would steer the economic affairs of the country to the desired change.
“Not just fancy members but people who know their onions with regards to economic issues to advice him properly so that they would be able to come up with good economic blue print for the next four years.
“Economically, Nigeria is not in a good state now. If the challenges facing the economy are not addressed then we are still where we are,” he said.
NAN recalls that the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) recently put the number of MSMEs’ in Nigeria at more than 17 million.

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