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Starting early: How innovative partnerships can bridge the skills gap 

Job creation and income generation are two vital indicators of economic growth in developing countries, especially Nigeria.

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Unemployment, Starting early: How innovative partnerships can bridge the skills gap 

Job creation and income generation are two vital indicators of economic growth in developing countries, especially Nigeria. This, in turn, depends on the availability of an appropriately educated and skilled workforce with the knowledge, skills and competencies necessary for work in the globalized economy. 

A former Commissioner for Wealth Creation & Employment in Lagos, once stated that many Nigerian graduates are unemployable. He has never hidden his fear that many training institutions are churning out graduates whose skills do not match what the labour market wants. 

His position is in sync with the notion that the country’s youth unemployment scourge could be traced to the obvious mismatch between what employers need and what the nation’s tertiary institutions are pushing out. 

unemployment, Starting early: How innovative partnerships can bridge the skills gap 

Why it matters: The former commissioner and other critics are emphatic that tackling rising unemployment required a comprehensive reform of the education system in a manner that will produce graduates with qualifications and skills that match the needs of the job market. He said if the job market is incapable of offering sufficient opportunities for the country’s unemployed youths because of skills mismatch, “then it’s time to turn to alternative solution by horning the skills of youths like BLK Prestige Investment does, through deliberate training, to suit market or employers’ needs.” 

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It is important for both the government and private firms to work with development partners to offer courses on employability and entrepreneurial skills and such employability skills programme should target 400 people to get jobs after acquiring new skills. 

[READ MORE: Twitter, Okonjo Iweala ask Youths to Create Jobs via Social Media]

Such an initiative would focus on soft skills, preparing Curriculum Vitae (CVs), interviewing for jobs, and learning how to design or look at the feasibility of a business project. 

Alongside offering skills courses, it is also required to go a notch higher by setting up a state-wide  network of  job registration and counselling centres to help youths consider career options, adjust to the realities of the job market as well as find local employment and training opportunities. The purpose of the project was to make sure youths get access to the information they need to make carefully and consciously planned choices for their future. 

It also aimed at helping to create a level playing field for unemployed graduates who do not have personal connections through friends and family members to secure their dream jobs like it is obtainable in BLK Prestige Investment or rise to top positions when they get one. The project involves a broad package of supportive measures including career guidance, trainings, active job search support and work experience programmes. 

However, the need for training and mindset shifts not only among youths but also among government officials in business management. This entails strengthening the skills of young entrepreneurs through training and mentorship as well as providing financial support like BLK Prestige Investment. 

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It is worthy to note that some states are ready to work with employers in managing and strengthening education and training system to adapt curricula quickly to meet changing skill demands. 

Such cooperation should be developed at all levels, including tertiary institutions, and cover short-term training to address swiftly skill deficits. It is also to support high-quality career guidance to help people make well-informed choices about their learning and careers, with digital entrepreneurship as an important part of this effort. 

[READ ALSO: Jobs have been lost and prices have skyrocketed – LCCI’s DG speaks against border…]

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Some of the states government were dedicated to enhancing digital entrepreneurship by bringing  together corporations, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), trade unions, civil society, academia, as well as digital entrepreneurs in partnership. Their strategy was to digitalise existing traditional businesses and like BLK Investment Prestige, provide an enabling environment for staff to thrive and transfer of skill to the unskilled. 

 

NM Partners represent articles published in paid partnerships with corporate organisations. They include press releases, targeted content, and other forms of corporate communications on behalf of our Paid Partners.

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A new MSME Academy is now available for all Africa’s Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises in Nigeria

MSMEs are invited to join our first series of informational webinars tailored for MSME operating in Nigeria.

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Spearheaded under the AUDA-NEPAD “100,000 MSMEs by 2021” (100K MSMEs) programme launched by the African Union Development Agency – AUDA-NEPAD and the Ecobank Group, the MSME Academy provides easy access to practical training and resources on financing opportunities in various countries, how to build a digital presence for businesses and how to adapt business operations in the era of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Panafrican MSME Academy offers free access to market intelligence, a host of mentors with a diverse experience while assisting with access to funding opportunities. The MSME Academy will have three components: an informational webinar with invited speakers, a series of virtual instructor-led trainings and mentorship for the MSMEs.

MSMEs are invited to join our first series of informational webinars tailored for MSME operating in Nigeria. The first webinar provides tips on access to finance and building a digital presence.

When: 3rd  September 2020

Where: Register to the MSME Academy at https://msmeacademy.nepad.org/

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About AUDA-NEPAD 100k MSMEs

The AUDA-NEPAD 100K MSMEs programme is focused on the implementation of the Agenda 2063 Aspiration number one (1), which aims at building a Prosperous Africa, based on Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Development.

The programme will provide support to African MSMEs and is structured in three pillars, namely:  the MSME Academy, MSME Marketplace, and MSME Financing Support Programme to be delivered through an MSME Digital Platform.

  1. MSME Academy: The MSME Academy aims to build the capacities of MSMEs across Africa through a combination of relevant content library, a network of institutions specialized in MSME support such as incubators and accelerators, and a community of peers, mentors, and advisors.
  2. MSME Marketplace: a consolidated marketplace of marketplaces, enabling MSMEs to access e-commerce, procurement and alternative financing opportunities across the continent
  3. MSME Financing Support Program: a scheme that will bring together financial institutions, guarantee funds, and other institutions to reduce the cost of risk for lenders to deliver capital to MSMEs at scale. The objective is to radically expand access to finance by aggregating smaller financial institutions such as micro-credit institutions and credit unions that have access to micro-enterprises, standardising their processes, and building trust in their capabilities.

The MSME Digital Platform is a one-stop-shop for all MSMEs across Africa to access all these three programmes which jointly address MSMEs’ challenges with access to capacity building, markets, and capital.

About AUDA-NEPAD

The African Union Development Agency-NEPAD is the development agency of the African Union, coordinating and executing priority regional and continental development projects to promote regional integration towards the accelerated realisation of Agenda 2063 – Africa’s vision and action plan. We are mandated to strengthen the capacity of the Member States and regional bodies.

 

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About Ecobank Group

Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (‘ETI’) is the parent company of the Ecobank Group, the leading independent pan-African banking group. The Ecobank Group employs over 14,800 people and serves more than 23 million customers in the consumer, commercial, and corporate banking sectors across 33 African countries. The Group has a banking license in France and representative offices in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia; Johannesburg, South Africa; Beijing, China; London, the UK, and Dubai, the United Arab Emirates. The Group offers a full suite of banking products, services, and solutions including bank and deposit accounts, loans, cash management, advisory, trade, securities, wealth, and asset management. ETI is listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchanges in Lagos, the Ghana Stock Exchange in Accra, and the Bourse Régionale des Valeurs Mobilières in Abidjan. For further information please visit www.ecobank.com.

 

Media Enquiries- For more information contact and to schedule interviews:

African Union Development Agency-NEPAD

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Ms Millicent Kgeledi – Communications Officer

Tel: +27 83 2661829 | [email protected]

 

Ecobank Nigeria

Mr Austen Osokpor – Media Relations

Tel (+234 8023877699| [email protected]

 

For technical questions related to the MSME Academy, please contact [email protected]

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The Africa Soft Power Project: New virtual summit featuring 50+ speakers across 15 sessions launches this week

Sessions will be free to attend and include a Q&A component.

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This week will see the launch of a new global virtual summit, focused on how Africa can harness soft power effectively. Hosted by Nigerian stakeholder communications firm, RDF Strategies, in collaboration with Dragon Africa and a number of media and corporate partners, the fifteen-part series will run from Aug 12th – Sept 4th, and feature 50+ speakers from across the creative and commercial sectors.

 Themed ‘Creative Power: Content, Culture, & Platforms – Where is the Money?’ the virtual event represents a first of its kind convening of creative and technology leaders from across the globe. Sessions will be free to attend, and include a Q&A component, allowing audiences to converse directly with some of the most prominent thought leaders and pioneers, focused and passionate about Africa.

Some of the sessions include:

  • Reopening Africa – An Opportunity to Reboot
  • The Globalization of African Beats: Culture, Trends & Opportunities
  • The Future of Sports & Live Entertainment
  • Pop Culture, Gender Roles, & Responsibility to Audience
  • Rethinking the Business of Beauty – Sustainability, Visibility, & Trends
  • Going All The Way: Africa & The Diaspora
  • Full line-up: https://theafricasoftpowerproject.com/#sessions

 Some of the speakers include:

  • Yewande Adewusi, BBC News Regional Director for Africa (Moderator)
  • HRH Nnaemeka Alfred Achebe, The Obi of Onitsha
  • Nana Bediatuo Asante, Secretary to the President of the Republic of Ghana
  • Sandra Jackson Dumont, CEO, Lucas Museum of Narrative
  • Mike Eboda, CEO Powerful Media
  • Full line-up: https://theafricasoftpowerproject.com/#speakers

Some of the partner organisations include:

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“When you look at the global dialogue on Africa – compared to somewhere like the US – it is markedly different,” says Nkiru Balonwu, Partner of RDF Strategies & Convener of The Africa Soft Power Project. “The global news, and even our own, love to amplify the negative issues that face the continent, while often remaining silent on its successes. The onus falls on us as everyday Africans – and those of African heritage around the world – to challenge these negative stereotypes and build a better picture of our future. Music, art, film, fashion, and all creative mediums are unified by a common theme: their ability to powerfully communicate, and engage people through narrative. Beyond the creative sector, brands and businesses would do well to understand that there is a direct correlation between on-going stories of African success, and the continent’s ability to attract money, and increase individual country-level GDP.”

“It has been an absolute pleasure coming together to build this platform as a bridge for important conversations between Africans and the African diaspora,” said Obi Asika, Founder & Chairman, Dragon Africa. “I strongly believe in our soft power and the need for all African nations to intentionally invest in it. From my lens, when I say ‘soft power’ I am referring to our cultural and creative industries, the innovators, the storytellers, from Nollywood to Afrobeats, from our cuisine to our fashion, our art and literature, our culture and our lifestyle. In this first series we have an amazing array of speakers who will dive deeper into some of these areas. We are also focused on monetization, on how we can build African-owned platforms that can scale to meet our needs and most importantly how we can build alliances between Africa and our diaspora to raise capital & build capacity for us to win together. There has never been a more important time to take ownership of Africa’s narrative and introduce our true heritage and history to a world that has been sold a mononarrative not of our making.”

As the world’s last large, underdeveloped market, the importance of the creative and knowledge industries take on added significance when we consider that the continent will be home to more than a third of the world’s population and half of the world’s youth by 2100. Individual discussions within The Africa Soft Power Project summit will form around how Africa can harness its soft power effectively, to advance strategic interests and shape global conversations.

For more information and to sign-up for specific sessions, please visit: https://theafricasoftpowerproject.com

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Top passive income strategies using Cryptocurrencies in Nigeria

Now is the time to enter the wagon of the Blockchain and Decentralize Finance wave.

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The world of today is one where one needs multiple streams of income. Just saving some money in a bank account is no longer sufficient to guarantee financial safety. This is due to the low-interest rates across all countries of the world. Regular savings account with low-interest payments could ironically be losing money due to inflation.

This is where cryptocurrencies and the world of Blockchain at large can help. There are numerous opportunities in it to make some money on the side without having to risk income trading. These types of strategies give a return without active participation by the user.

This is the world of passive income, a stream of money that is accumulated over time regardless of the actions of the user. There are many protocols and services in the crypto space that offer possibilities to make money passively.

As the world is faced with the COVID-19 crisis and the Central Banks of the world print money, inflation is a big threat to developing nations. Nigeria is no exception. The latest figure of the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) is 12.5% for July. This, coupled with the average APY for a savings account being 4.2%, means any regular saver in the country is losing money with a savings account.

Before we continue, check out this analysis of Bitcoin’s performance during this COVID-19 pandemic posted on Remitano.

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This is why every Nigerian needs to research and be involved in passive income strategies. The future of the old financial system is in question while the crypto economy is growing. We just saw a bull run while the global economy is in crisis. The strategies outlined here, plus others out there can be a critical tool to achieve financial independence.

First Staking

The current trend in Blockchain protocols is to move away from Proof of Work (PoW) towards Proof of Stake (PoS). This has to do with the high costs of mining hardware, risks of centralization, and scalability limitations of the Proof of Work consensus algorithm. This made many old and new protocols move away from PoW and adopt PoS in their blockchains.

The Proof of Stake algorithm works, as the name suggests, by forcing those nodes looking to get rewards from validating transactions to lock some funds in the network to do so. This is known as staking, the nodes that meet the requirement enter a lottery to become the origin of the next block. Once the block has been propagated successfully, the node receives a reward in the native cryptocurrency of the network.

One way to do this is to set up a node by yourself and stake some crypto to become a validator. This, however, is not without risk. A node has a set of responsibilities in the network, such as staying online 24 hours a day. If a node fails in those responsibilities, it losses part or all of the locked funds. This is done to encourage nodes to play an optimal role in the Blockchain.

This means that running a full node alone is risky, and it could be a little expensive. Not as expensive as a mining farm, but above one thousand dollars. This is where stake pools become attractive. A stake pool is where a group of users delegates their cryptocurrency to a node in exchange for some of the rewards it gets when validating a block.

The pool operator gets a higher percentage of the rewards and the possibility of becoming a validator more often. The lottery is not purely random. The more a node stakes in the network, the higher the chances of validating the next block. So, pool operators have the incentive of attracting many stakeholders to make their chances better.

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Some of the protocols offering stakeholding are Algorand, Vchain, Tezos, Tron, Cardano, and some others.

Cardano is the latest to offer stake pools with its after launching its mainnet on July 29th. Unlike Ethereum, there is no limit to how little a person can stake in the network. This makes it an invaluable tool for passive income strategies.

Second Crypto Saving

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Crypto saving is a new example of the traditional savings account in the world of Blockchain. Cryptocurrency exchanges are in constant need of liquidity for coins and tokens on their platforms. This means that a user holding some coin or token lets us say Tether (USDT) can loan this token by depositing it in a liquidity pool for others to borrow. The people on the other side of the operation have to pay interest, and part of that interest is given back to the depositor.

The most popular services for this type of strategy are found in Ethereum. This is because most DeFi products are in that Blockchain. These pools include Compound, Aave, Uniswap, and dy/dx. Additionally, users of the Argent mobile wallet can directly connect to these protocols from the app on their phones.

The interests are standard annual returns. These range from 3% to 5%, except in Compound. In it, the interest rate varies daily and also changes per token. On some days, DAI may have a higher return than USDT, while on other days, the trend can reverse to favor the second. The interest earned is calculated daily, and the savings can be taken out at any time.

This makes it the easiest choice to earn passive income in the Blockchain right now. The limitation is that, for now, it mainly works in the Ethereum network. The variety of tokens that can be used to make deposits is restricted to those issued in Ethereum. Some examples are Tether, USDC, Basic Attention Token, DAI, Wrapped Bitcoin, and others.

There is no boundary to how much money a person can deposit in these protocols. It can be as little as one dollar of some stable coin such as Tether or DAI. This is great for people looking to save in the Nigerian market. Instead of using bank’s savings accounts, which lose to inflation, a savings pool like Compound can return a higher interest rate in a year than any commercial banks could under the present economic conditions.

Finally Affiliate Rewards

Many exchanges, protocols, and other blockchain projects rely on affiliate marketing. They need happy and engaged users to drive traffic towards them and boost organic growth. Of course, this demands that the user has some platform, Twitter account, YouTube Chanel, etc., to reach an audience. So, it is not entirely passive.

Of course, rewards accumulate over time. It is unnecessary for a promoter to constantly post on social networks to achieve a steady stream of income. One of the most advantageous affiliate programs is the one offered by Remitano. This affiliate program not only gives rewards on direct referrals but also on referrals of downliners. All commissions are on a recurring basis.

Click this link to learn more about the Remitano affiliate program, the best affiliate program in the crypto space.

The world of cryptocurrencies grows by the day. The opportunities to cultivate multiple streams of income are only increasing in Blockchain. Now is the time to enter the wagon of the Blockchain and Decentralize Finance wave.

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This is an especially powerful tool for Nigerians and citizens of developing nations. Before, we were limited by those financial institutions running in our countries, but the crypto economy is global. Blockchain has eliminated all the limitations of trading, savings accounts, investing, and other services, which in the past were only available in developed countries. Blockchain has opened the doors to financial freedom, and it is up to each of us to go through them.

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