The Minister of Industry Trade and Investment, Mr Olusegun Aganga, has unveiled a new policy for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in Nigeria saying any tier of government that ignores these stronghold of the economy will fail.
Dr Aganga said MSMEs represent over 90 percent of the businesses in Nigeria and employs over 84 percent of the country’s labour force, insisting that it requires a policy that attracts the appropriate investments on that sector.
He said the revised National Policy is necessary, especially as Nigeria most requires a diversified economy, divergence from oil and increase in non-oil output to sustain growth and keep the country out of risk.
As at 2010, when the first ever national MSMEs survey was conducted in Nigeria, there were about 17.3 million MSMEs employing 32.4 million persons and contributing about 46.54% to the nation’s GDP in nominal terms.
The statistics have increased five years later, and the outstanding results have given key players in the commerce sector reason to revisit the national policy in the sub-sector towards guided economic growth and development.
While Mr Aganga maintains that necessary mechanisms must be put in place to support MSMEs, experts believe that for industrialization to succeed, a robust MSME sub-sector is required, insisting that it is not the government that creates jobs but rather enterprises.