The Federal Government has announced plans to provide financial support for 1.7 million businesses and individuals across the country within the next 3 months.
This disclosure was made by the Minister of State for industry, Trade and Investment, Ambassador Mariam Katagum, at the virtual commissioning of the Fashion Cluster Shared Facility for Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) tagged, Eko Fashion Hub, in Lagos.
Katagum disclosed that the initiative is borne out of the Federal Government’s continued commitment to helping cushion the devastating impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the economy by saving existing jobs and creating new job opportunities.
The minister said that President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, through the Economic Sustainability Committee, had announced specific programmes aimed at cushioning the impact of COVID-19 on MSME businesses.
She said, “The Federal Government is fully committed to empowering Nigerians; more so in the face of the COVID-19 Pandemic. In this regard, the government, through the Economic Sustainability Committee had announced specific programmes aimed at cushioning the impact of COVID-19 on MSME businesses.
“These programmes include among others, the N75 billion MSME Survival Fund and Guaranteed Off-take Schemes of which I have the honour to chair the Steering Committee for the effective implementation of the projects.
“The project, which will run for an initial period of three months, is targeting 1.7million entities and individuals and has provisions for 45 per cent female-owned businesses and five per cent for those with special needs. The registration portal for the schemes is set to open on Monday 21st September 2020 and I urge you all to take full advantage of the schemes.’’
The Nigerian Economic Sustainability Plan which was produced by a committee headed by the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, is a response to the health and economic challenges which foisted on the country by the outbreak of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Aside from developing robust monetary policies and fiscal measures to enhance oil and non-oil government revenues and reduce non-essential spending, the plan also includes a N2.3 trillion stimulus package for the economy.
Katagum said that the schemes were at the core of the N2.3 trillion stimulus package being implemented by the Federal Government. She said that the commissioning of shared facilities was also expected to provide succour and relief to the teeming micro-businesses in need of space and infrastructural support
432,000 business applied for FG payroll support, 70,000 shortlisted
70,000 Nigerian businesses have been shortlisted for the Payroll Support of FG’s Survival Fund Grant Scheme.
70,000 businesses in Nigeria have been shortlisted from the 432,000 businesses that applied for the Payroll Support of the Federal Government’s Survival Fund Grant Scheme. Many states did not meet their quota and plans are ongoing to seek an extension after the portal closed 5 days ago.
Mr. Tola Johnson, the Project Coordinator of PDO and Special Assistant to the President on Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), confirmed this to the DailyTrust.
Nairametrics had earlier reported plans by the FGN to roll out a N2.3 trillion stimulus package and survival fund for Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to stay afloat amid the economic challenges imposed by the pandemic.
The survival fund includes payroll support for three months and a guaranteed off-take scheme among others, all under the National Economic Sustainability Plan (NESP).
What they are saying
Commenting on the latest development, Mr. Johnson said, “As at the day the portal closed to applicants for Payroll Support Scheme, we had 432,000 businesses that applied. However, we have shortlisted 70,000 that met the requirements. These businesses have uploaded over 400,000 staff for us to pay for three months.’’
Mr. Johnson pleaded for an extension, noting that though the portal closed on the 15th of October, 2020, many states did not meet their quota
“The Project Delivery Office, which I head, is taking this plea for an extension to the Steering Committee headed by the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Ambassador Mariam Katagum.
“To know whether to extend the date for online application into the payroll support scheme will be based on the data available to us.’’
He concluded by emphasizing the need for BVN and digitalizing the process, noting that business owners will not be paid directly. Only their staff will be paid subject to the provision of BVN.
Why it matters
The support is a kind gesture by the FG, aimed at alleviating the impact of the pandemic on MSMEs. It is a way of averting massive job loss, creating income for the staff, and stimulating the economy, as the impact of MSMEs in developing the economy can not be overemphasized.
AGSMEIS: CBN expands beneficiaries to 14,638
The CBN has extended the number of beneficiaries under the AGSMEIS to 14,638 applicants.
The Central Bank of Nigeria has extended the number of beneficiaries under the Agri-Business Small and Medium Enterprise Investment Scheme (AGSMEIS) Loans to 14,638 applicants.
This information is contained in a communique from the last MPC report of CBN verified by Nairametrics. The communique also revealed that 250 SME businesses, predominantly the youths, have also benefited from the Creative Industry Financing Initiative.
In addition to these initiatives, the CBN is set to contribute over N1.8 trillion of the total sum of N2.30 trillion needed for the Federal Government’s 1-year Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP), through its various financing interventions using the channels of Participating Financial Institutions (PFIs).
A few months ago, the CBN announced that it has unveiled a framework that will integrate a non-interest window in all its intervention programmes aimed at supporting businesses and households that have been impacted negatively by the COVID-19 pandemic. Nairametrics had earlier reported on how to access the AGSMEIS fund.
Why it matters
Given the impact and accompanying harsh consequences of the pandemic, coupled with the present regime’s focus on diversification of the economy, this intervention is therefore aimed at achieving the diversification goal, reflating the economy, creating more jobs and income, managing inflation, and setting the economy on the path of recovery.
CBN in the latest communique of its last MPC meetings also revealed that it has disbursed a total of N3.5 trillion in interventions in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic as of September 22, 2020. The breakdown of the disbursement includes:
- Real Sector Funds: N216.87 billion
- Targeted Credit Facility: N73.69 billion
- AGSMEIS: N54.66 billion
- Pharmaceutical and Health Care Support Fund: N44.47 billion
- Creative Industry Financing Initiative: N2.93 billion
In terms of project distribution, a total of 128 projects that comprises 87 real sector funds project and 41 health-related projects have been funded. In like manner, about 120,074 have received funding under the Targeted Credit Facility.
N75 billion Nigerian Youth Investment Fund to be rolled out before end of October – Minister
Youths are expected to come up with brilliant ideas that will enable them to access between N250,000 and N50 million each.
The N75 billion worth Nigerian Youth Investment Fund (NYIF) will be rolled out before the end of October 2020. This was disclosed by the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr Sunday Dare, in a statement on Wednesday, according to NAN.
The statement, which was issued by the Minister’s Assistant Chief Information Officer, Olatunji John, explained that the ministry challenged youths to come up with brilliant ideas that would enable them to access between N250,000 and N50 million of the N75 billion Nigerian Youth Investment Fund for sustainability.
He stated, “The programme is about to be rolled out before the end of this month. President Muhammadu Buhari approved N75 billion in three years because he believes in the dream of youths, aimed at lifting 10 million Nigerians, including youths out of poverty before 2023.”
What you must possess
While urging the youths to take advantage of the opportunity, Dare stated that prospective applicants must show clearly that they have the market, resources and manpower to access the fund.
“The process for accessing the fund would be fair to all youths aged 18 to 35, regardless of their ethnicity or social status,” he added.
According to him, the move became imperative “because building a youthful population that is empowered and successful, is one of the cardinal objectives of this administration.
“For the first time, this country is investing directly in youths. So, government is taking a good risk on our youths, which it hopes will awaken their creative and genius innovative ideas.”
The Minister recalled that apart from the Federal Government investment fund, the ministry had initiated other youth-centered opportunities such as the Digital Literacy, Entrepreneurship, Employability and Leadership Skills (D.E.E.L) and Work Experience Programme (W.E.P).
Others, he said, included the Digital Youth Nigeria (DY.ng) and Nigeria Online Youth Assembly (NOYA) programme, all carefully crafted to address unemployment and employability of youths.
Back story: On October 1, 2020, Nairametrics reported that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) announced that the NYIF would soon be disbursed.
The apex bank made the announcement via its Twitter handle on Thursday, while the nation marked its 60th Independence anniversary.