The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has called on the Federal Government to drive the growth of the non-oil sector through enhanced participation of the Small and Medium Enterprise (SMEs) sector.
Mrs Nike Akande, the President, LCCI, made the appeal in Lagos during the celebration of the UN Day for Micro, Small and Medium-Scale Enterprise.
The UN on April 6 in New York adopted a resolution recognising the crucial role MSMEs play in economic growth for sustainable development.
Following the resolution, June 27 of every year has been set aside globally to commemorate Micro, Small and Medium-Scale Enterprises Day.
The maiden edition of the MSMEs Day in Nigeria was organised by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry .
Akande said that the non-oil sector guaranteed a more sustainable growth beyond the volatility of oil prices in the international market.
She said that the chamber was passionate at seeing the private sector empowered in order to positively impact on job creation, poverty alleviation and supporting economic development.
“We therefore recommend that the current reform efforts are sustained to ensure stronger and sustainable businesses in Nigeria.”
“There is a need for a stable policy and regulatory environment that supports the reforms on the ease of doing business in Nigeria.”
“Issues of taxation, trade and foreign exchange policies should be managed in line with international best practices.”
“This should take into consideration policies that facilitate trade, attract foreign investment and protect businesses from avoidable regulatory pressures,” she said.
Akande said that with the right policy environment and provision of needed infrastructures, Nigerian entrepreneurs were resourceful and diligent to fully contribute to economic recovery and growth.
Mr Ronald Kayanja, the Director, United Nations Information Centre (UNIC), said that MSMEs were vital in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, particularly in promoting innovation, creativity and job creation.
According to him, efforts to enhance finance for MSMEs across key sectors of national economies is important to implementation of SDG Goal 8 of creating decent work and economic growth; and Goal 9 of creating industry, innovation and infrastructure.
He urged the banking and financial institutions to create a tailor-made intervention that would ease access to finance for MSMEs.