The federal government has officially flagged off the N60 billion Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) Survival Fund and Payroll Support Scheme.
During the official flag-off held in Abuja on Thursday, the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Ambassador Mariam Katagum, said the two schemes were part of the government’s N2.3 trillion Nigeria Economic Sustainability Plan (NESP).
During the official flag-off held in Abuja on Thursday, the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Ambassador Mariam Katagum,said the MSME Survival Fund, which has kicked off, was designed to cushion the effect of COVID-19 on vulnerable SMEs.
THE NATION reports that, The Nigerian Economic and Sustainable Plan (NESP) has kicked off the disbursement of the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) N75 Billion Survival Fund and Guaranteed Off-take Stimulus schemes.
The NESP was initiated by President Muhammadu Buhari on March 30, 2020 and approved by FEC on June 24, 2020.
It is chaired by Vice President Yemi Osibanjo and the ministers of Industry Trade and Investment as members. Also, the Group Managing Director Group Managing Director of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, including other stakeholders, are members of the committee.
Katagum said in keeping to its promise to support businesses overcome challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the government is set to commence implementation of two MSMEs’ initiatives, namely, the MSME Survival Fund and the Payroll Support schemes, as the first to be rolled out with N60 billion and then, the Guaranteed Off-take Scheme, N15billion.
Katagum noted that both schemes are at the core of the N2.3 trillion stimulus package also known as the NESP being implemented by the Buhari Administration to help cushion the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic to boost the economy by saving jobs and creating new job opportunities.
Statistics released by SMEDAN and the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) stated that over 95 percent of the 41 million MSMEs in Nigeria are micro businesses.
Consequently, the nation cannot afford to neglect this huge segment of our economic landscape which contributes a very high percentage to employment and the GDP.